About Service Learning At MIAD

As MIAD’s Service Learning Program concludes its 21st year, we continue to build our base of community partners and make substantial contributions to many different sectors of the southeastern Wisconsin community. Every year we get many compliments from partner agencies on the creativity and dedication of MIAD students.  Here is a small sample:

“We are always glad to have MIAD student learners and I feel like the program has worked for both of us when they want to stay on after like Emily will be doing! Super excited to have her continue to be part of the Co-op team!”

Supervisor: Wendy Mesich
Placement: Riverwest Co-op
Student: Emily Bodecker

“Camryn was a joy to work with. She displayed a dedication to service and a true sense of what it means to give back to the community. Her work ethic, positive attitude, and ability to work independently and within a team were exemplary.”

Supervisor: Cheryl Ousley
Placement: Friedens Community Ministries
Student: Camryn Oestreich

“Kaleb works hard and truly cares about the work he is doing. He has been very thoughtful in the work we’ve done together and I have never been so confident in someone to finish a project after I’ve gone. Please take this into consideration as he finishes the project, I wouldn’t want to rush things. This is a mural in a calm down room for autistic patients at a Dentist who works with students from Marquette University and serves many patients on Medicaid. Dr. Arif-Holmes is a solo practitioner, so she is busy but she has stopped in to thank myself and Kaleb and sign off on anything he needs for this class. It has been a joy to have Kaleb’s help!”

Supervisor: Rose Curley
Placement: Mayfair Family Dentistry: Lakisha Arif-Holmes, DDS
Student: Kaleb Hibbs

“Grace was absolutely lovely and an excellent worker! She was always on time and always ready to jump on whatever task I had to give her. During one of our sessions the lead artist was late and she jumped in to run the group until he arrived as I had other responsibilities at the moment. She was consistently professional, positive, and a pleasure to work with.”

Supervisor: Abigail Ziesemann
Placement: Artists Working in Education
Student: Grace Cotton

  In 2012 the Milwaukee Institute of Art and Design was named to the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. The Honor Roll recognizes colleges and universities that support exemplary community service programs and best practices in campus-community partnerships.

MIAD distinguishes itself as a leader in art and design colleges by being one of the first to implement a required Service Learning Program comprising intensive courses and a minimum of 35 hours of community service per student.

The COVID-19 pandemic required us to shift our course policies considerably. Generally, Service Learning students are required to choose a local organization to volunteer for in person. From Summer 2020 through the Summer 2021 semesters, all of our students volunteered remotely (with the exception of some individuals in SU2021 who volunteered in person after filling out a waiver.)  Many local organizations either didn’t have a use for remote volunteering or had furloughed volunteer coordinators due to the pandemic and couldn’t provide any volunteer opportunities. While a typical year has students volunteering at anywhere between 60-80 local nonprofit organizations, the 2020-2021 academic year only had students placed at 34 organizations. 21 of them were local to the Southeastern Wisconsin area and 13 were either based elsewhere or run nationally or even internationally, such as TimeSlips, Zooniverse.org, Project Linus, and the eBird project through Cornell University.