About Us

The Center for Community-Engaged Learning (CCEL) is open to all students, faculty, staff, and community members at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. We focus on immersing students in the local community through volunteering, service-learning classes, and other unique experiential opportunities. CCEL works with partners to provide opportunities for students to engage in off-campus experiential learning through community work and place-based educational programs. Whether academically-based or co-curricular, these experiences complement classroom learning, foster personal, professional and civic development, and allow students to work with others to enhance the well-being of our communities.

What We Do

  • Community-engaged learning classes: Each year CCEL supports over 115 academic courses across all colleges and departments that require or have an option to complete a hands-on project or project-based work within the community. This opportunity supports real-world experience and exploration and provides additional context to academic coursework. 
  • Volunteer peer advising: CCEL is partnered with over 300 local organizations and offers volunteer advising based on interests, experience, career path, academic studies, and goals.
  • Community Engagement Scholars Program (CESP): The CCEL coordinates the Community Engagement Scholars Program, which provides recognition for undergraduate students' work within the community. This multifaceted program helps guide students in making meaningful contributions to local communities, compliments their undergraduate education and provides a transcript notation when they graduate. 
  • National Student Exchange: National Student Exchange (NSE) is another experiential education nonprofit hosted within the CCEL. NSE provides the opportunity to study away for a semester or an academic year at one of the 200 member institutions throughout the United States, Canada, and U.S. territories including Puerto Rico, Guam, and the U.S. Virgin Islands


We offer U of M students, community partners, faculty, and staff a range of information and resources about service-learning and community involvement. In 1989 the University of Minnesota–Twin Cities began to provide support for the development of academic service-learning in three classes. Today, our office supports more than 130 classes a year, located in more than 60 academic programs and 12 colleges on the Twin Cities campus.