Loyola University Maryland

Messina

Messina Vocational Development Teaching Grants

Eight grants are available to Messina faculty/mentor teams beginning in the 2021-2022 academic year and continuing into 2022-2023 ($1000/team member of three-person teams in Year 1 and $500/person in Year 2). This grant opportunity is funded through NetVUE which is part of the Council for Independent Colleges, and has a wealth of networking opportunities and repository for scholarship on vocational development of college students. The purpose of these Messina grants is to foster the development of innovative curriculum to explore vocational discernment and promote personal and intellectual growth in first-year students that will be broadly shared. 

Who is Eligible to Apply?  

All faculty/mentor teams teaching in Messina during the 2021-2022 academic year are encouraged to apply. Only one application per Messina faculty/mentor team is required.  

How to Apply 

Applicants should submit the following documents:  

  • A cover page indicating how long each instructor/mentor has taught in Messina, each instructor’s academic discipline, and whether this is a new pairing or if the instructors have been paired in previous years. 
  • A CV for each instructor and mentor. 
  • A clear and concise (no more than 2 pages) statement that addresses the following questions: 

1. What is your Messina working group’s understanding of vocation?
2. How do you imagine vocational discernment relating to your Messina course pairing and enrichment activities?
3. What types of (digital) resources would be helpful to your group and other Messina groups?

It might help for you to consider what aspects of vocational development will be the focus, which could include considerations for self-awareness (e.g. Who am I?), lifeview questions (e.g. What makes a life meaningful?), a sense of calling (e.g. What am I called to do in my life?), a focus on career development and decision making (e.g. What contexts align well with my strengths and interests?), considerations from a particular discipline (e.g. What is the Biologist’s vocation? Why does Sociology matter?), or other aspects of educating for vocation and purpose.   Additionally, consider some initial ideas on what types of assignments and activities could be intended products of your work (e.g. meditative or spiritual activities, reflection and self-awareness, an art project, a service learning project, possible resources and readings, personality assessments, narrative and storytelling, academic or career exploration, etc).

 

Expectations for Grant Recipients 

  • Attend the two-day, summer retreat that will be held June 23-24, 2021, preferably in person. Remote participation could be made available upon request. Team members will be provided with books and other materials to support their work at this time. At this retreat, participants will become further educated on best practices in promoting students’ vocational discernment, which in turn will catalyze the development of the Messina course materials.  
  • Generate assignments/activities that will be implemented during their Messina courses across three semesters from Fall 2021 – Fall 2022. Grant teams are expected to present progress on their work at the Messina workshop in August 2021 and then in August 2022. 
  • Attend a half-day retreat to share experiences and lessons learned in January 2022 and revise their syllabi and curated assignments based upon success of implementation each semester. 
  • Provide testimonials captured in written and video footage, as well as student work about this experience that will be used in the curation of a video about vocational exploration in action through Messina.
  • Assist in gathering of assessment of student learning, which will involve the assignment of a reflective essay for students to complete at the end of each semester to understand their vocational discernment practice gleamed through the developed assignment/activity.  
  • Respond to a series of questions after each academic year (2021-2022 and 2022-2023) about how the collaborative efforts of Messina partners contributed to overall effectiveness of vocation discernment initiatives.

Accountability 

Documentation of faculty collaboration and course integration will occur in four phases. 

Phase I (August 2021 deadline)  

  • Present intended assignments/activities at Messina August workshop and upload said materials to a Netvue Microsoft Teams Site.
  • Course syllabi and instructional resources used in the collaboration and course integration. This may include some of the following items: Common texts or readings; student assignments including directions and samples of student work for a given semester 
  • Participation in soliciting Messina assessment of student vocational discernment experience. 

Phase II (January 2022 deadline)

  • Instructors will submit a brief self-assessment of how successful the collaboration was for course integration. The self-assessment is meant to complement the requirements for the faculty annual update.
  • Participation in half-day retreat to share experiences from implementation of curated activities/assignments and lessons learned.
  • Revised course syllabi and instructional resources used in the collaboration and course integration. This may include some of the following items: Common texts or readings; student assignments including directions and samples of student work for a given semester

Phase III (August 2022 deadline)

  • Review assessment findings and revise courses as needed
  • Instructors will submit a brief self-assessment of how successful the collaboration was for course integration. The self-assessment is meant to complement the requirements for the faculty annual update.
  • Present developed assignments/activities and lessons learned at Messina August workshop

Phase IV (December 2022 deadline)

  • Review assessment findings and revise courses as needed
  • Instructors will submit a brief self-assessment of how successful the collaboration was for course integration. The self-assessment is meant to complement the requirements for the faculty annual update

Deadline for Applications and How to Submit Applications

Applications must be received no later than June 9, 2021; successful applicants will be notified no later than June 11, 2021. All materials should be Word documents. Applications should be submitted as an email attachment sent to Messina@loyola.edu. 

Additional Information

Prospective applicant should contact Mike Puma at 410-617-2669 or mpuma@loyola.edu with any questions or concerns.  

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