Welcome to Miami Dade College’s Institute for Civic Engagement and Democracy (iCED). Established in 1994 as the “Service-Learning Center” with a Learn and Serve grant from the Corporation for National and Community Service, the department initially focused on developing a service-learning program at the college.
In 1997 MDC President Dr. Eduardo Padrón joined President Clinton’s America Reads leadership team and helped MDC create the nation’s largest community college Federal Work Study America Reads program. With these new responsibilities, the name of the department was changed to the Center for Community Involvement (CCI).
By 2012 CCI had grown exponentially in service-learning involvement, as well as myriad other civic, leadership, and community partnership programs. In addition, MDC joined the Democracy Commitment and participated in the development of the seminal AAC&U national call to action “A Crucible Moment: College Learning and Democracy’s Future.” This led to the development of a new mission statement and name for the department with enhanced programming to refocus our efforts on civic learning and democratic engagement.
iCED is a college-wide program that serves all eight MDC campuses, is part of Academic Affairs, works closely with Student Affairs, and is responsible for myriad programs at the college, including (partial list):
- Academic service-learning
- America Reads
- Strong Women Strong Girls
- AmeriCorps and AmeriCorpsVISTA programs
- Civic leadership programs
- Partnerships with non-profits and community organizations
- Maintenance of community partner database (www.mdc.edu/serve)
- The President’s Volunteer Service Award program
- Service-learning/civic engagement grant procurement and management
- The Public Service Fellows program
iCED’s flagship program is academic service-learning which is the largest of any community college in the nation with more than 300 faculty, 1000 course sections, and 8,000 students involved in course-related service each year.