By Peter Kim
During 2011-12, the AAADS Community Studies Task Force met to strategize about how best to strengthen the community engagement work done within so many of our courses. The faculty, students, and community workers on the Task Force designed and disseminated a survey tool to assess the best ways for AAADS students to engage with local community based organizations (CBOs) when participating in field work and internships and as volunteers. Outreaching to almost 30 local agencies (including longstanding groups such as Asian Health Services, Asian Immigrant Women’s Advocates, Asian Law Caucus, East Bay Asian Youth Center, and Asian American Recovery Services), the Task Force’s goals are to both maximize students’ learning experiences in the field and the value of their contributions to the organizations that they are working with and to the communities that they serve. AAADS wishes to develop and maintain lasting relationships with local CBOs, enhance the community engagement projects in our courses, and provide students with the tools and experiences necessary to become active members in the communities we call “home.” The Task Force is co-chaired by Harvey Dong and Peter Kim.