Three hours will change your life.

Service-Learning is a form of experience-based education where students engage in service as part of their academic course work.

It is believed that doing service work can help students better understand the abstract concepts presented in their classes.

Likewise, the ideas learned in class can help students make sense of the human and social problems they encounter through their service work.

“I would highly encourage incoming first year students to enroll in a Freshman Service-Learning course because it brings to life our motto of the Magis. Serving with and for the greater good of others is essential in grasping the purpose of a Jesuit education and this course takes students beyond campus to experience it.”

-Lauren F., 2019 

“The most influential lesson I learned this year was going out of my comfort zone and reaching out to my new community at college. I never thought that service-learning would change my life as much as it has this past year in and outside the classroom. It is amazing that I can learn the issues of our society in which I never have thought about before in the classroom and then get to fully experience it for myself at service. I highly recommend taking a service- learning course for your freshman year, it will change your perspective for the better.”
-Brittany C., 2020
“Service-Learning was an incredible experience to be a part of in my Freshman year at Saint Joseph's. It provided valuable insight and relations with the community around me and taught me even more about the true spirit of this university considering they have a program of this magnitude. I was given true life experience and an entirely new and moral way of seeing the world around me and living my everyday life to the fullest. I would highly recommend this style of course to any incoming freshman because of not only what the students provide the community but also due to what the experience gave me. Being fully embraced by the community from the very beginning of freshman year got rid of any nerves regarding college and allowed me to grow closer to the university in general.”
- Connor H., 2021

"My service location is St. John's Hospice. The most important lesson I have learned is service through presence. The fact that we are there goes a long way to them."

-Olivia S., 2021

What is Service-Learning?

A Service-Learning class combines academics with experience and reflection. Lectures, texts, and tests are enhanced by weekly service engaging schools and non-profit agencies that are making a difference in the Philadelphia area. Topics such as poverty, AIDS, violence, mental illness, and racism are explored both in the classroom and in the community.

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Types of Service-Learning Classes

Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors of all majors are eligible to register for Service-Learning classes. You must be willing to commit three hours per week to an organization that we will help you select for your class. Contact the Faith-Justice Institute to find out which Service-Learning classes are being offered each semester or check out the course listings posted.

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Service-Learning and Jesuit values

The Service-Learning Program at Saint Joseph's University is based in the Ignatian Tradition. In our courses this perspective is actualized by five core criteria  seeking to foster a commitment to developing the whole person of conscience, competence and compassion.

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Hear how three hour changes lives from current students

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Hear why service-learning matters from alumni