Faculty Fellows Program

To promote the goals of VCU’s Quest 2025: Together We Transform, funds have been designated for experienced service-learning faculty to participate in the Service-Learning Faculty Fellows Program. This program is designed to:

  • cultivate faculty leadership for the civic engagement and regional transformation goals of the university mission.
  • support faculty development by advancing interdisciplinary community-engaged research, and
  •  increase departmental and campus capacity to provide innovative 21st -century learning experiences through service-learning and community engagement by developing a cadre of master teachers in service-learning.

Applications for the 2019-2020 Fellowship program will open in Spring 2019 (application form below). Applications will be due in May 2019.

Application Deadline and Notification

Applications are received each spring, and notifications are made in early June for the following academic year. For additional details on applying, contact Dr. Lynn Pelco at lepelco@vcu.edu.

Applications for 2019-2020 Faculty Fellowships will be due in May 2019.

Current and Previous Service-Learning Faculty Fellows

Second-Year Fellows Re-Application Form (Word)


The VCU Service-Learning Faculty Fellow Program supports faculty members who have experience in teaching service-learning classes to improve, document and disseminate their mastery of service-learning to others. Fellows are appointed for one year with the potential of extending their appointment for one additional year. Second-year fellows must apply and be accepted.

Each Fellow is expected to:

  • update/improve at least one service-learning course.
  • produce scholarly products related to their service-learning initiatives.
  • provide formal and informal service-learning training to VCU peers and/or community partners.

Faculty Stipend

VCU Service-Learning Faculty Fellows will receive $3,000 for their participation in the first year of the fellows program. The second, optional, year is compensated at the level of $2,000. Continuing fellows must apply and be accepted. These amounts can be transferred to an academic department for course buy-out or for professional development, or can be received as two lump sum payments for summer salary (Note: 12-month employees may not receive summer salary).


All faculty, including tenure-line, term, clinical and adjunct appointments from all academic units at VCU with at least two semesters experience using service-learning, are eligible to apply for the Service-Learning Faculty Fellows program.  It is expected that each year’s fellows group will include both first-year and two second-year fellows.

Schedule and Expectations


Fellows will meet with each other and with the Director of Service-Learning regularly throughout the year. An orientation meeting will be held during the first month of the academic year for all fellows; and all fellows will meet together as a group at least one additional time each semester. Individual fellow meetings with the Director of Service-Learning will occur as needed throughout the academic year.

Activities related to Teaching:

Each Fellow will work throughout the year to revise and improve at least one of their service-learning courses. In particular, Fellows will be expected to focus attention on improving the strategies/tools they use to assess their students’ learning outcomes and/or the community impact of their course.

Activities related to Scholarship:

Each Fellow will be expected to complete at least one scholarship product during the fellowship year. The Service-Learning Office staff will assist Fellows in finding outlets for their scholarly service-learning products. Co-authored products are encouraged, particularly those that include student and community partner co-authors. Fellows may work collaboratively with each other on scholarship products.

Activities related to Dissemination:

Fellows are expected to assist the Service-Learning Office staff in building capacity on campus and/or in the community for the delivery of high quality service-learning courses.This assistance may take the form of presentations to departmental faculty/staff, professional development workshops related to service-learning pedagogy, individual consultations with faculty, staff, or community partners, etc. Fellows will finalize their specific plan for dissemination activities in collaboration with the Director of Service-Learning.

Reporting Requirements

Due on or before May 1:
 Each Fellow is required to provide the VCU Service-Learning Office staff with an end-of-year report that includes the following components. NOTE: Activities/accomplishments that are planned/expected to occur between May 1 and Aug. 31 can be included in the report as (Expected):

  • SECTION ONE: Evidence of their scholarly products and works in progress
  • SECTION  TWO: Description of dissemination activities completed
  • SECTION THREE: An updated service-learning course syllabus with a narrative to explain the improvements made.

IMPORTANT: First-year fellows who wish to be considered or a second fellowship year must combine their end-of-year report with their Second-Year Fellows Reapplication Form (Word) and submit both by the May 1 deadline.

Selection Criteria

The goal of the VCU Service-Learning Faculty Fellows Program is to involve faculty from a wide-range of disciplines. Evaluation of applications will be based on the following criteria:

Service-learning teaching goals:

  • Experience in teaching service-learning classes.
  • Assessment and/or evaluation of service-learning class to date.
  • Plans for improvement of at least one service-learning class.

Service-learning scholarship goals:

  • Alignment of the Faculty Fellows program to the applicant’s professional scholarship goals.
  • Plans for disseminating service-learning work through publishing and/or presenting at refereed professional conferences.

Service-learning dissemination goals:

  • Plans for disseminating service-learning expertise at VCU and/or in the community (community partner, academic unity and/or department).