Service Learning RAP

This exciting year-long program provides students with an opportunity to engage in activities in and out of the classroom to:

  • Explore ways to make a positive impact on the larger community around UMass.
  • Find a place for themselves as part of that community. 

When you join this RAP you will:

  • Work in a local community service site for 30 hours both fall and spring semester.
  • Learn about and engage in mindfulness and contemplative practice.
  • Explore individual and societal perspectives on social justice.
  • Participate in activities to develop your own individual leadership style.

Through service-learning classes, you will make connections between what happens during your work in the community and what you read and discuss in your classes.  Your work in the classroom will make you more effective in your service; your work in the community will deepen your learning about yourself and the world we share.

Your 1 credit RAP Seminar will introduce you to a wealth of campus resources including those that focus on issues of diversity and social justice, giving life to the theory you will learn in class. In addition, you will learn about and practice strategies for ethical and effective interpersonal and intercultural communication, which will be useful as you perform service at your chosen community site, as well as more generally in your life as a student and beyond.


Service in IMPACT!

Each IMPACT! student chooses one organization as a community service site for both the fall and spring semesters.

IMPACT! community partners include a soup kitchen/food pantry/free store, an elementary-age after-school program, a community adult education program, and an on-campus workplace education program. 

Contemplative Practice in IMPACT!

Contemplative practice is the practice of focusing and paying attention.  When we do contemplative practice, we slow down and become more mindful of the present moment.  We learn to enter each present moment with more full awareness. We practice mindfulness in IMPACT! in order to enhance our learning, enhance our service, and enhance the quality of our lives. 

Social Justice in IMPACT!

In IMPACT! we explore how our lives are shaped by the society in which we live.  We look at our identities and the experience of being in relationships with people whose identity is different from ours-other students, people we encounter through service, and other people in our lives.

Leadership in IMPACT!

In IMPACT! we connect theories of leadership with the practice of leadership.  We read about different approaches to leadership and about the processes of group dynamics and teamwork.  We do this exploring of self within a community because the community can give support.

More details about this unique RAP are available on the website for the Office of Civic Engagement & Service Learning.

Be sure to visit the How to Join page on this website to learn about the process and important timelines you must follow to become a member of this fantastic program!   

Once you select IMPACT! RAP, you will be contacted by CESL staff to discuss your selection and to answer any questions you may have.


Fall 2014

ALL students in the IMPACT! Service Learning RAP will enroll in the following classes in the residential area:

"RAP Seminar"- UNIV 190R
1 credit


"Service, Contemplation, and Social Justice" Service-Learning 192   (Gen Ed SBU),
4 credits     

Spring 2015

"Leadership and Service"  (Service-Learning 193), 
3 credits


"College Writing" - English 112 (Gen Ed CW), 3 credits, a limited number of sections will be offered in each residential area both fall 2014 and spring 2015 semesters.


Each student will spend at least 30 hours each semester (approx. 3 hours/week) working in community service at a site organized through the program.


Students will live together in Gorman Hall in Central area of campus.

Pamela R. Marsh-Williams, Ph.D.
Assistant Provost & Dean

This website is part of Undergraduate Advising & Learning Communities. We provide undergraduate students a variety of opportunities and services designed to facilitate the best academic experience possible. 609 Goodell Building, UMass Amherst.

UA&LC Units: Undergraduate Advising, Residential Academic Programs, Domestic Exchange Programs, Five College Interchange