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Community Service Learning

Community engagement and public service are defining qualities of Tufts University. The School of Medicine partners with Tufts’ Jonathan M. Tisch College of Civic Life, a national leader in civic education, to provide the Community Service Learning (CSL) program. Through this program, all medical students spend at least 50 hours working directly in the community as collaborators, mentors, and educators. These first-hand experiences enable students to understand health disparities while honing the clinical, communication, and teamwork skills that are essential to their work as physicians.

CSL experiences address a range of health issues and patient populations. The Sharewood Project, a free health care organization that is managed primarily by first- and second-year students, is just one example of the ways students can volunteer their time while also developing their clinical skills. Each CSL project provides students with the tools to identify and address the complex factors that influence health inequities.

In addition to the CSL program, students committed to working with the medically underserved can apply for the Sam W. Ho Health Justice Scholars Program, which develops physician-leaders and scholars who are trained to transform healthcare in partnership with communities. Additionally, the Tisch Summer Fellows program provides paid summer internships in community health centers and local nonprofits focused on addressing health disparities. The Active Citizenship Concentration Program (ACP) enables students with clinical experience to interrupt their regular curriculum to pursue full-time volunteer work either abroad or in the U.S.

Organizations and Projects

Program Directors & Staff

The program is led by Course Co-Directors Dr. Mark D. Pearlmutter, M84, Carolyn Rubin, Ed.D., and CSL Coordinator, Jen Greer-Morrissey.