Bonner Scholars Activity

Community Engagement supports and strengthens Wofford’s efforts in diversity and student success. 

As John Saltmarsh and Alan Bloomgarden wrote in their recent external review of Wofford, “Wofford College shares with other similarly positioned higher education institutions the challenge of long-term demographic changes that have altered the racial and ethnic identities of the undergraduate population. There is both a strong educational case for diversity – in that it improves teaching and learning to have multiple perspective contributing to education – and there is a budgetary case for diversity - in that tuition-driven campuses need to be able to attract and retain a diverse student body to be able to be financial sustainable. Addressing diversity of students also means addressing the diversity of the faculty and creating an inclusive campus climate…Faculty from underrepresented backgrounds often have scholarly interests that are tied to social issues in local communities, and they also often bring active and collaborative teaching and learning practices into their classrooms, the kinds of practices that improve the retention and success of underserved students.”

Engaged learning or high-impact practices, like civic engagement, especially work for students who are underrepresented or less prepared in higher education (Kuh, 2008). These practices can support students to make critical gains and persist in college. Wofford’s efforts to make these engaged learning practices connected with civic dimensions can support the retention and educational success of its student body.