Advancing Community Development
The Advancing Community Development (ACD) Program is a one-semester, community-based learning program administered by Rutgers Collaborative Center for Community Engagement and a gift to the Rutgers Foundation by Johnson & Johnson (J&J). Participating students learn about community health and wellness interventions, non-profit management, and the role of anchor institutions in their communities. Working in project teams guided by J&J skill-based volunteers and non-profit professionals, students execute community-based projects for local New Brunswick organizations so they can better serve the health-related needs of residents. The program fosters a community of practice where individuals from multiple sectors collaborate and learn from one another to improve health outcomes in our host communities. Participants will have some time devotion to the project, which will be a few hours a week to ensure a successful project.
Participating student gain:
- Leadership skills
- Network Opportunities
- A stipend upon satisfactory completion of the program
- Mentorship from professionals from nonprofit organizations
- Professional Development
- Project Management Skills
- Team Building Skills
ACD is constantly seeking projects from local non-profit organizations within the New Brunswick community. If you or your organization has questions regarding a possible project, please email email@example.com. If you have a project that you would like to consider, please submit the project on our ACD Project Interest Form.
Some of our past projects include:
*A social media outreach marketing campaign for the new family planning clinic for RWJ's Community Health Promotions Program
*A video to brand the offerings of the Middlesex Arts Institute to improve the quality of life for residents
*A redesign of marketing materials for Elijah's Promise’s Culinary School aimed at lifting residents out of poverty by providing job training;
*A program design review to create a Nature Rx program for the Rutgers Garden aimed at increasing city residents access to the healing benefits of open space.
To participate in the program, students must have 30 credits and a minimum GPA of a 2.5. All applicants meeting the requirements will be interviewed for possible inclusion in the ACD program. To apply, go.rutgers.edu/collaborativeapply
Rutgers Bonner Leaders
Rutgers Bonner Leaders at Rutgers–New Brunswick are part of the national Bonner Foundation Network of college students who are committed to community engagement and social justice. At Rutgers, Bonner Leaders are involved in every major New Brunswick community event as they learn to serve within an orientation to social change.
What do Rutgers Bonner Leaders do?
- Attend an Orientation during the Fall semester and weekly meetings on Fridays from 3-5pm, during the academic year
- Serve at organizations in the areas of food access, health equity, college access, youth development, senior citizen well-being, among other possibilities
- Participate in community engagement initiatives throughout the New Brunswick and Piscataway communities
- Attend state and national leadership conferences and trainings to gain professional development opportunities
- Students must receive Federal Work Study to be eligible to apply.
2024 Bonner Leader Applications will be available in Spring of 2024.
If you have any questions, please reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org
Watch Our Introduction Video
CIVIC VOICES is a community-based audio project developed by George Street Playhouse and Rutgers Collaborative Center for Community Engagement. Designed to better understand the unique, diverse voices of communities throughout New Jersey, CIVIC VOICES encourages civic engagement by strengthening community discourse through theatre arts.
Six students from the Rutgers Bonner Leader Program were given microphones to document their work in several community organizations based in New Brunswick, New Jersey. Civic Voices: The Audio Diary Podcast Series explores their experience and their unique perspectives on how these organizations create a lasting impact.
Featuring audio documentaries by:
Sunzida Ahmed is a sophomore studying Political Science at Rutgers–New Brunswick's School of Arts and Sciences. With aspirations to go to law school after college, she hopes to pursue a future in environmental law or criminal justice reform. On campus, Sunzida is involved with the Rutgers University Mock Trial Association, New Student Orientation and Family Programs, and Residence Life. She has been a Rutgers Bonner Leader for two years and takes pride in tutoring high school students for the Upward Bound Program.
Listen to Sunzida's audio documentary, Doing Good.
Maria Guevara Carpio is a junior studying Public Health and Business Administration at Rutgers–New Brunswick's School of Environmental and Biological Sciences. Maria was born and grew up in Peru. During her high school years, she moved to the United States. Maria is involved with the Paul Robeson Leadership Institute and Helyar House. She has been a Bonner Leader for three years serving in a variety of settings, including the New Brunswick Community Farmers Market, the Community Health Promotions Program, and the Bonner Program itself. She is bilingual, loves reading, doing art, and creating content through different mediums.
Listen to Maria's audio documentary, A Little Lost/Un Poquito Perdida.
Samia Khondaker is a sophomore studying Biology and Psychology in the School of Arts and Sciences at Rutgers–New Brunswick. She is from Egg Harbor Township, New Jersey and volunteers at local clinics. She hopes to go to medical school and dreams of being a physician. On campus, Samia is an undergraduate research assistant at the Psychology Lab and she is a first-year resident assistant for the upcoming school year. She has been a Rutgers Bonner Leader for two years, serving in Youth Empowerment Services, Girl Scouts, and EMPOWER. During her free time, she loves spending time with friends and trying new food places off-campus.
Listen to Samia's audio documentary, The Importance of Nonprofits: Discovering the Impact of Youth Empowerment Services.
Rashel Bernal Reyes is a freshman who intends to major in Cell Biology & Neuroscience at Rutgers–New Brunswick's School of Arts and Science. She wants to pursue a career as a Pediatric Neurologist. Rashel has grown up in New Brunswick and continues to serve her community. Rashel is an EOF Scholar, Herstorian for the Latin American Womxn Organization and an active member in the Mexcian American Student Association. This was her first year serving as a Bonner leader, first at Upward Bound and most recently at the New Brunswick Public LIbrary.
Listen to Rashel's audio documentary, The Privilege of Going to College in My City.
Andrea Rojas is a rising senior majoring in Journalism and Media Studies. She will graduate in 2021, ready to write about current events and use her media skills to shine a light on important topics. Andrea has been a Bonner Leader for three years. She has worked as their social media chair in addition to being a tutor at Youth Empowerment services. Andrea enjoys watching Latinx soap operas and reading books.
Listen to Andrea's audio documentary, Cooped Up.
Katherine Taveras is a rising sophomore studying Linguistics at Rutgers–New Brunswick's School of Arts and Science. Upon graduating with the Class of 2023, Katherine hopes to teach English abroad in Japan as a part of the JET program before pursuing her masters in Speech Pathology. Katherine is involved in various organizations on campus, such as the Peruvian American Student Association and the Organization of Luso Americans at Rutgers. She is a Douglass Woman as well as a student of the School of Arts and Sciences Honors program. As of May 2020, Katherine will have completed her first year as a Bonner Leader serving at Upward Bound, where she tutors high schoolers. Katherine speaks several languages, including Spanish, Portuguese, and some Japanese. During her free time, she enjoys listening to music, reading, and using her favorite application: Duolingo.
Listen to Katherine's audio documentary, The High School Experience.
Community Walking Tours
Rutgers Collaborative Center’s Community Tours are an informative and fun way to familiarize the Rutgers Community with its surrounding city neighborhoods. The tours are approximately 90 minutes and are designed for students, faculty, staff, and the community at large to gain an understanding of the city’s history, cultural assets, and major institutions. We walk through historical neighborhoods around College Avenue, Douglass campus, and downtown New Brunswick. Frequent stops are made in front of city murals, parks, local institutions, and restaurants. The tours dates are announced at the beginning of the Fall and Spring semester.
If you need a tour for your class or student organization, please contact Claudio Mir at email@example.com
This tour covers the RWJ Hospital and the impact from the waves of immigration of people from Hungary, Poland and Mexico as seen from the city’s neighborhoods, restaurants, houses of worships, murals, and cultural institutions.
This tour covers the major institutions that serve the health, cultural, and social needs of city residents including NBPAC, the New Brunswick Public Library, Chandler Community Health Center, Mt. Zion A.M.E. Church, Elijah’s Promise Garden, The Congregation Poile Zedek Orthodox Ashkenazic Synagogue, First Reformed and Christ Church, J&J, George Street.
Covers Paul Robeson Boulevard, Elijah’s Promise, the Promise Garden, the Remsen Avenue neighborhood, Civic League, Unity Square, Paul Robeson School, NB Community Farmer’s Market, Recreation Park.
Rutgers Collaborative Center brings together community and government leaders, professionals, faculty, staff, and students sharing experience, expertise, and energy to achieve shared goals for our community through education and action.
Rutgers Collaborative Center represents a history of community engagement at Rutgers-New Brunswick that includes partnerships spanning more than 20 years as well as innovations that respond to emerging social issues, including:
- Partnering to empower youth between 10-16 through AMARD&V (Artists Mentoring Against Racism, Drugs and Violence) arts and culture summer program.
- Addressing food insecurity through organizations such as the New Brunswick Community Food Alliance and the Feeding New Brunswick Network that promote access to healthy, culturally appropriate food.
If you have a long-term project or a community event in mind, contact the Rutgers Collaborative Center to explore how we can work together.
New Brunswick Campus Support
The Collaborative Center supports the Rutgers New Brunswick campus through co-curricular engagement that aids students and community partners.
- Provides opportunities for roundtable discussions and conferences that offer opportunities for engagement with community and government leaders, students, and professionals.
- Opportunities for mutually beneficial partnerships and student placements. View an example here.
- Assistance in connecting students with community partners to work on projects that aid the New Brunswick/Piscataway communities.
Our support extends to student orientations to community engagement, connecting students with community partners, and annual celebration and awards recognizing student achievement.
We will gladly meet with students or community partners to familiarize them with the New Brunswick/Piscataway community.
To learn more about how we can get you engaged in the community, please email the Center at firstname.lastname@example.org.