The certificate is administered by American Studies and directed by Thomas Marvin in the English Department.

The certificate in Social Justice Organizing is an 18-credit hour program for students enrolled in a degree seeking program. The certificate combines classroom instruction with practical experience in the community.  The core course, American Studies A341 (designated RISE -Experiential) engages students in service learning with a local community organization or labor union. The interdisciplinary certificate draws on courses from eight different departments. Students complete at least one internship of 150 hours and may choose to do another internship or a capstone project in partnership with a local organization.  The certificate is intended to give tomorrow’s community leaders the knowledge and practical skills they need to build viable democratic institutions and contribute to social and economic justice.

A certificate in Social Justice Organizing empowers students to pursue careers in non-profit management, government, education, organized labor, law, and any other field sensitive to cultural contexts and power dynamics.  Students completing the certificate will be prepared to work with diverse communities and help people at the margins of society participate in civic life. The certificate is consistent with the mission of the School of Liberal Arts because it fosters the exchange of knowledge that promotes understanding of the human experience.  The certificate draws upon high impact practices in liberal education by integrating methodologies from the humanities and the social sciences and involving students in applied, collaborative research experiences.