Have you completed your CEL-1 hours? Are you preparing to pass Division I at the end of this semester? If you answered yes to either of these questions, now is the time to begin reflecting on your CEL-1 experience! On Thursday, April 19 from 12-1PM in the Dakin Living Room, Nell Arnold, assistant professor of fiction writing, presented a CEL-1 reflection workshop to an audience of first-year students. Ivana Staiti, community engagement and collaborative learning coordinator, joined the workshop as a special guest, and to respond to technical questions regarding the CEL-1 website, verification, and other related topics. Did you miss it? Wondering what happened? Read on for an overview of the workshop and some helpful hints from our facilitators.
While participants enjoyed a free lunch, Nell Arnold distributed a list of CEL-1 Freewrite Prompts to supplement those that are listed in the reflection section on the CEL-1 website. These questions, which are more specific in nature, can help enhance your focus as you prepare your written reflection. The questions on the CEL-1 website are fairly broad, so Nell suggested using these prompts to break apart the big questions and to help participants to think more deeply on what was most meaningful for them as they completed the requirement. Nell guided participants through a number of these prompts, and those in attendance had the opportunity to share more about the opportunities that they took on and how they fit into their overall Division I experience.
Some Sample Questions:
A PDF version of the CEL-1 freewrite prompts is linked in the paragraph above, but here are a few of our favorite prompts to get you in the mindset for CEL-1 reflection.
- Did your CEL-1 activity bring a “community” into being? If so, how?
- Did you meet new people? Did you find common ground with them? Did you find that your views and expectations differed? If so, in what ways?
- Did the CEL-1 give you any opportunities to teach someone else or give anyone advice about how to do something?
- If you could change something about your CEL-1 experience, what would it be? How would you advise a first-year student, next year, about how to have a successful and enjoyably challenging CEL-1 experience?
What We Learned:
- Completion of the space in the reflection section of your chosen activities on the CEL-1 website is not a requirement, but it does provide a good starting point for identifying what pieces of your CEL-1 reflection you want to include in your Division I retrospective. Spend some time reflecting on each of your activities ahead of time. It will make the CEL-1 portion of your retrospective that much easier to complete.
- The CEL-1 is an academic requirement, and you’re encouraged to consider what you’ve learned outside of the classroom that you can bring inside the classroom in your future work. By framing it in this way, you may make some surprising discoveries about how the CEL-1 will influence your future academic experiences at Hampshire.
- It’s okay to admit when things didn’t go as planned. Capitalize on your learning experiences as you reflect!
- If you’re focusing on one primary activity through which you completed your hours, feel free to make mention of the other ways in which you were involved on campus too. We want you to focus on what was most meaningful, but there’s no reason not to share the fullness of your involvement experience in your retrospective.
Use These Resources:
- For general information about the CEL-1 requirement, visit the CEL-1 website or check out our two prior blog posts on the CEL-What? workshops in October and February.
- Still have questions about reflection? Send a note to firstname.lastname@example.org. They’re happy to help!
Did we miss something? Need more information? E-mail us at email@example.com.