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Freshman Year: Finding Roots

How will you develop your active citizenship?

From the beginning of your time at William and Mary, Aim 4 integrates active citizenship, the skills and perspective of positive community change, into your journey. 

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Why join Aim 4 your freshman year? 
  • Partner with communities for positive change through service
  • Gain a strong network for support and growth with other first year motivated students and upperclassmen mentors
  • Develop skills and explore values transferable to life during and after college
"I joined Aim 4 because I really enjoyed community service and wanted to help people. This is still true, but I have a more nuanced, advanced perspective now. I am developing the skills and resources needed to combat complex social issues." - Aim 4 Freshman

"Before Aim 4 I had not heard often term "active citizenship." I have been raised to value community engagement, but I have never thought of it as deeply as I have had to in the past nine weeks. The enormous amount of reflection that I have participated in since school started has made me realize the importance of said reflection. I know that in order to build meaningful relationships and make meaningful change I need to look at the root causes of an issue and try to interact with those causes." -Aim 4 Freshman 

First Year Experiences
Community Engagement Experiences 

 Learn about your new community directly from the community through selected service experiences alongside other participants. You will complete at least 12 service experiences each semester. Transportation and facilitation provided. 

Community Engagement in Context Course (Spring)

Explore ideas of what community can be and what it means to lead and serve in a community context. Through readings, discussion, lecture and reflection, you will gain an understanding of topics including respect and mutuality, active citizenship,identity and privilege, work for social justice, the importance of relationships in community, advocacy and activism, and business and social change.

Team Meetings

Explore the practical skills and perspectives crucial for active citizenship and community change, such as engaging in effective dialogue, contacting your elected representatives, and learning from local community members. 

Community Events 

Sit in on a school board meeting, participate in a community discussion around homelessness, meet with the city manager. Alongside OCE staff and other Aim 4 students you have the opportunity to connect with local civic leaders.