Guilford College

Bonner Scholars - The focus of the Bonner Scholars Program changes as students become more experienced during their four years of service. Each semester, Bonner Scholars complete 140 hours of service work, in addition to 280 hours of service work during each of two summers of service.

Format

  • Audience: The Bonner Center serves the whole campus including our adult and early college students.
  • When: All year, winter and summer term.
  • Approximate Number of Participants: 60 Bonner scholars, over 90 students participate in the Community Scholars program. Overall, we serve over 400 students a year through our various programs.
  • Focus of Retreat: The Bonner Center also plays a vital role in supporting Guilford College to meet its mission and purpose of providing a practical, liberal arts education (also shaped by the Quaker tradition and the values of the College) through which students, faculty, and staff also make a positive impact on communities.

Funding and Operations

The Bonner Scholars Program has a operating budget between $25,000-$40,000.

  • External Support: Several years ago, we received an endowment from the Bonner foundation to support the Bonner Scholars program as well as future community engagement programs.
  • Operations: $25,000-$40,000; 1.8 million with scholarships.

Description

The Bonner Center is the lead unit responsible for coordinating the work of community engagement and community engaged learning. The Bonner Center builds, leads, sustains, and manages deep partnerships, brokering relationships and projects between the campus and surrounding communities through which students, faculty, and staff engage experientially, learn, and contribute to positive community impact. The Bonner Center also plays a vital role in supporting Guilford College to meet its mission and purpose of providing a practical, liberal arts education (also shaped by the Quaker tradition and the values of the College) through which students, faculty, and staff also make a positive impact on communities.

History

Guilford was one of the first colleges (in 1992) to adopt the Bonner Scholar Program, which today enrolls approximately 60 students in a four-year developmental program providing support for college access, success, and leadership through service. Today, the Bonner Center fosters and sustains a number of committed community partnerships in the Greensboro area, provides training and advising to students, and connects partners with other resources on campus, including through academic community engagement. Guilford’s Bonner Center is poised to advance the role of community engagement as a critical part of the undergraduate experience, one that is tied to Guilford’s institutional priorities like supporting student success and persistence, diversity, engaged learning, and ongoing connections with the places and communities that surround the college.  The program has been running for 25 years. 

Recommended Resources

Administration/Operations

Several years ago, we received an endowment from the Bonner Foundation to support the Bonner Scholars program as well as future community engagement programs. Operations for this program costs $25-40,000, and with scholarships, the amount is 1.8 million. 

Assessment

We track program successes through regular reflection sessions, community partner evaluations, capacity building assessments and individual Community learning agreements.  Our reflection sessions are the most useful indication of student development, while one on one sessions with community partners have been most helpful in determining impact.