Community-Based Learning

Community-Based Learning classes foster connections between academic learning and action in the world. At Drew, CBL classes partner with community organizations to increase their ability to serve their clients, make evidence-based decisions, and strengthen the health and vitality of communities. Through research, service, and advocacy, students gain real-world experience in a professional setting that serves the common good.

All CBL classes fulfill Drew’s Off-Campus Experience general education requirement and may also fulfill major, minor and other general education requirements. See course listings for details. Students registering for CBL classes should be prepared to travel off-campus and devote approximately 2 hours per week to assisting their assigned community partner.

Examples of our CBL Classes

Community Based Learning courses are offered every semester in multiple fields of study. For more detailed information, view current and past semester listings:

Fall 2017 CBL Classes

Spring 2017 CBL Classes

Fall 2016 CBL Classes

Minor: Applied Leadership

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No matter what path you take after graduation – conducting research, promoting human rights, advocating for environmental sustainability, or working in the business world – the Minor in Applied Leadership provides the tools to magnify your impact.

Connect your passion for action with your academic interests through hands-on experience and engaging course work. Build a practical set of skills for any intended career, whether in nonprofit, for profit, government, or community. Learn to lead with integrity while gaining leadership knowledge and experience. Then develop a plan for putting your new leadership skills into action – at Drew and wherever your life path takes you.

About the Minor

Requirements: 20 credits; no more than 8 credits taken for this minor may be counted towards a major.

Gateway Course (4 credits): CE 250: Leadership in Practice. Examine the scholarship on individual, organizational, and social change leadership in the context of a real-world project, introducing leadership as a practice and field of study.

Ethics Course (4 credits): Choose one course from regular offerings in ethics.

Communication or Management Course (4 credits): Choose one course focused on developing communication or management skills important to effective leadership.

Experiential Learning

  • Community-Based Learning (4 credits):Select one Community-Based Learning class at or above the 200 level in any field.
  • Internship (2 credits):Complete a 70 hour internship that includes shadowing a decision-maker and writing a research paper emphasizing scholarship, practice, and values of effective leadership.

Leadership Project (2 credits)

CE 350 CE 351: Leadership In Action I & II: Develop a year-long leadership project focused on real world problems. Students research, plan, implement and evaluate the progress and impact of their projects.

For more information, email us at

Innovation 2017-18

Drew’s Innovation Program is designed to unleash  creativity and problem-solving skills while introducing students to the skills needed to move from concept to implementation in the real world. Working with experienced mentors from business, the nonprofit world, and academia, students learn how to shape and develop their ideas, test and rework them, and pitch them to funders.

Through a 2-course sequence starting in Fall 2017, students will build their ability to innovate for the common good.

CE 275: Special Topics in Civic Engagement: Innovation 1 & 2: Students create and implement solutions to real-world problems that have positive social impacts. Together, students act, think and collaborate across disciplines–including the arts, humanities, social and natural sciences. Throughout the course they connect with innovators and entrepreneurs outside of the university.

Professor Emily Hill

The 2017-18 focus is on how technologies harm or benefit societies and individuals. Students will take action to help avoid the pitfalls of technological advances while optimizing their benefits to humanity. Lead faculty are Emily Hill (Computer Science) and Andrew Elliot (Theater and Dance).

In recognition of the importance of innovation to our students, Professor Hill received a Periclean Faculty Leadership grant from Project Pericles.


Internships create unique opportunities to practice skills and theories learned in the classroom and see how they are applied in the workplace. Drew University offers internship opportunities with hundreds of companies and organizations close to campus and across the country.

Contact the Center for Internships and Career Development for more information about these opportunities.

Civic Scholar Gabi Bisconti C’16 had five internships in her time at Drew. Gabi interned for Joseph R. Patenaude Theater, New York Women in Film and Television, Night Castle Management, Greater Media NJ and ARTS by the People.