Volunteering and community service learning (CSL) is now easier than ever at UT Health San Antonio. The institution has launched our new community engagement platform: UT Health San Antonio ENGAGED.
ENGAGED is an online platform offered to our students, faculty, staff and community partners free-of-charge to help our university better achieve its mission of community engagement.
“Community service has been happening in silos, with each department volunteering and counting hours differently,” said Cindi Adcock, Community Engagement and Special Projects Coordinator. “ENGAGED will help centralize community engagement activities.”
All 10,000+ members of the UT Health San Antonio community are already enabled to access the portal. Members don’t need a reason to sign up to volunteer – you can sign up for any reason, institutional or personal, to serve with any of our currently registered community partners.
ENGAGED underwent a soft launch over the last two months. The School of Nursing’s Caring for the Caregiver Community Outreach Coordinator Sara Masoud, MPH, utilized the portal during the soft launch to register volunteers for their virtual events. “I think it is an intuitive program that will streamline volunteer programs and will hopefully increase the number of meaningful volunteer opportunities in our community. It is a great tool for tracking how volunteers make lives better through their involvement in our programs,” she said.
Students with the Center for Medical Humanities & Ethics (CMHE) are also using ENGAGED to sign up to serve in the six student-faculty collaborative clinics. The platform allows students to keep track of all hours served and automatically generates a portfolio to highlight their service activities while at UT Health San Antonio. Each department, division or unit is also able to create their own subgroups. According to Melanie Stone, Assistant Director of CSL at the CMHE, ENGAGED will now be the platform that students use to create, advertise and participate in CSL projects, apply for CSL grants and share their outcomes. “ENGAGED is a tool that will streamline CSL tracking across the university, making it possible to capture data like heat mapping of where service is taking place, which we have never had before,” said Stone.
Since volunteer and CSL hours are automatically recorded in ENGAGED, faculty and staff members can also be recognized by their school or the institution, or even nationally, for their contributions. The system has been implemented, tested, and approved at the highest levels of UT Health San Antonio.
Along with academics, research and patient care, community engagement is one of the missions of our institution. ENGAGED will help bring the community mission to the forefront of the organization and help build positive and productive relationships that truly make lives better in San Antonio and beyond.
If you have questions or would like to learn more about how ENGAGED works and how it can help you or your department serve our community, please contact ENGAGED project administrators Cindi Adcock and Melanie Stone.