WestARCHES is an integrative learning program that enhances the value of participation in a wide range of curricular and co-curricular opportunities and prepares students to translate passions into exciting career options.
The WestARCHES Program (Westminster Action Research through Community, Holistic Education, and Service) grew out of the Westminster Scholars program and provides seminar-style learning for students to gain experience in community-based research while developing skills in leadership, collaboration, diversity, and global concepts during freshman and sophomore years.
Later in the program, students design Individual Development Plans with a mentor to organize and deepen the value of the variety of curricular and co-curricular experiences that are possible through an interdisciplinary set of opportunities at Westminster. Possible experiences that may be included in Individual Development Plans include internships, study abroad programs, undergraduate research, independent study, May Term international study experiences, specific coursework, service learning, and more.
- Students will demonstrate self-awareness, understanding of effective group dynamics, and project management skills. Students will show comprehension of the collaborative process and active participation in leadership.
- Students will articulate knowledge of global, social, and ethical awareness from the standpoint of its relevance to their lives.
- Students will demonstrate proficiency in the research process from planning to developing methods to collecting data/evidence to analyzing/processing data/evidence and presenting conclusions and implications of outcomes.
- Students will learn about the many types of service e.g. direct and indirect service, social change, and implications for social justice. Students will demonstrate that they are able to approach service with an attitude of respect and equity. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the reciprocal nature of service learning.
- Students will demonstrate understanding of connections among curricular and co-curriculular learning experiences, from simple relationships to synthesis and transfer of learning to new, complex situations within and beyond the campus.
- Students will develop and complete elements of an Individual Development Plan (IDP) that includes curricular and co-curricular elements. Individual Development Plan completion will include clear connections between activities (curricular and co-curricular) and learning goals put forth in the IDP.