Nearly 40 excited 5th and 6th graders visited Chapman University this week for a jam-packed tour of all the university has to offer. Faculty, students, and staff from all over campus collaborated to give the kids a sampling of Chapman film, science, sports, college life, and more.
The field trip on April 18 was the culmination of a semester-long partnership between Chapman and Higher Ground Youth & Family Services, a local nonprofit organization based in Anaheim that provides mentoring for youth and their families in at-risk communities. Higher Ground offers after-school educational, athletic, social, and leadership experiences for youth as well as family support such as parenting classes, financial planning, a mobile medical clinic, and even a food pantry.
“Working with Chapman has been a dream. It changed the course of Higher Ground,” said Joe Baldo, founder of Higher Ground.
For more than two years, Chapman has offered courses in which students and faculty visit the Higher Ground after-school program to provide the kids with enrichment activities. Four Chapman courses met at Higher Ground this spring semester, with Dr. Quaylan Allen (Attallah College), Dr. Harry Cheney (Dodge College), Dr. Lance Langdon (Wilkinson College), and Dr. Victoria Carty (Wilkinson College). The partnership has the dual benefit of giving Chapman students practical, site-based experience, while positively impact in the larger Orange County community.
Wednesday’s field trip included an activity in the Foley Stage with Dr. Harry Cheney and Dodge College students, a strawberry DNA extraction led by the Women in Science and Technology (WIST) student organization, a visit to Chapman’s Cross-Cultural Center, play time on Wilson Field with Coach Stino Adams and Chapman students, and dinner in a Chapman dining hall.
Dr. Quaylan Allen and 13 IES students accompanied the Higher Ground kids throughout their full day on the Chapman campus.
“Dr. Allen’s IES (Integrated Educational Studies) class was phenomenal and represented Chapman with warmth, grace, and great leadership,” said Dr. Anat Herzog (Ph.D. in Education ’17), Attallah College Lecturer and Liaison for Academic Service Learning in the Office of the Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education.
“Everything was well planned and thoughtfully executed with much love,” said Baldo.