Document Type

Capstone Project

Publication Date



Stevenson Center, service learning, community development, student engagement, CESL, Center for Community Engagement and Service Learning


This applied research project examines the impact that student engagement has on the goals of a university’s community partners. A pilot study conducted in 2019 draws upon questionnaire and interview data gathered from administrators of seven community organizations that are longtime partners with Illinois State University. Key findings that emerge from descriptive statistics and thematic analysis of the data suggest that the positive impact students have on community organizations far outweighs any challenges the organizations may experience. The project concludes with recommendations on how to enhance the research tool for future evaluations and how to further improve the beneficial impacts that university students have on community partner organizations.