Children’s Literature Students Complete Semester-Long Community-Based Learning Project With the Buffalo City Mission


ENG 375 Students with Dr. Alice Villaseñor and Lisa Kragbé

During the fall 2018 semester, students in a section of Children’s Literature: From Ancient Myth to the Digital Age (ENG 375) completed a Community-Based Learning Project with the Buffalo City Mission. Led by instructor and English Program Director Alice Villaseñor, Ph.D., students also worked with Medaille College Library Director Andy Yeager and Assistant Director of Student Involvement Lisa Kragbé to research, select and deliver age-appropriate books for the Buffalo City Mission Cornerstone Manor’s Literacy Enrichment Afterschool Program (LEAP).

The ENG 375 students did research to select books appropriate for children (ages 5 to 12) participating in the LEAP Program, which were then purchased with funds from a Community-Based Learning grant. The semester-long project included two fieldtrips to the LEAP Program at the Buffalo City Mission Cornerstone Manor – one trip to meet with the program’s staff and students to learn their needs, and another visit to deliver the books, read to the children and facilitate an art activity related to one of the books.

An administrator from the Buffalo City Mission Cornerstone Manor, Susan E. Muscato, describes the impact the project had on the LEAP Program: “Dr. Alice Villaseñor, her team from Medaille and her students displayed genuine attention and care in learning about our organization and the needs of our students. The joy they had in sharing the books with our group was contagious, and our children love to read the stories that were gifted to them.” Muscato adds, “Medaille has been a great community partner over the last few years, and I would love to continue discovering ways we can join together for future projects.”

Community-Based Learning is an integral part of any student’s Medaille education. As a “U” course under Medaille’s EQUIP Program, the ENG 375 children’s literature course is structured by Dr. Villaseñor to help her students understand the discipline in relation to a community context. 

Photo by Medaille student Ga'Vintay McGhee captures ENG 375 students with Dr. Alice Villaseñor and Lisa Kragbé at the Buffalo City Mission Cornerstone Manor.

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