Degree Name

MA in International Education

First Advisor

Sora Friedman


This research evaluates the practices of specified faith-based institutions within the field of undergraduate global service learning through the lens of each of the major themes in the Fair Trade Learning framework. These themes include equal partnership, mutual learning, cooperative and positive social change, economic equity, transparency, and sustainability. Initial survey outcomes present an overall picture of where these particular universities are at in regards to balancing student and community outcomes. Interview outcomes provide a more in-depth perspective of how mutual benefit for student participants and host communities is being considered within the global service-learning programs these programs facilitate. Some of the key learning from this study includes the idea that if young people are seeking to pursue opportunities of service in transformational social change throughout the world, they must first “learn how to serve”. When this process is undertaken effectively, it is possible for students to slowly earn the trust to walk alongside community members in solidarity towards pursuing soulful and sustainable community transformation together. An examination of five specific tertiary global service-learning programs through the utilization of the Fair Trade Learning framework has assisted in contributing to the overall knowledge base in regards to faith-based institution involvement in ethical service-learning programs focused on mutual benefit for both student participants and host communities. This research also provides examples of best practices for other institutions to emulate as they pursue the design and implementation of global service-learning programs of their own.


Bilingual, Multilingual, and Multicultural Education | Civic and Community Engagement | Community-Based Learning | Community-Based Research | Educational Leadership | International and Comparative Education | Leadership Studies | Other Languages, Societies, and Cultures | Service Learning