JCES presents its first issue of 2010 with a certain confidence, secure in the conviction that the journal provides a quality outlet for some of the best “scholarship of engagement” (Boyer, 1996). The advancement of JCES toward its goal of becoming the premier academic journal in community engagement scholarship is reflected in this issue. It is reflected in the quality of the articles presented on the following pages. It is reflected in the depth and diversity of the manuscripts and author specialties. It is reflected in our continuous commitment to incorporating principles of authentic community engagement in every aspect of the journal.
In this regard, we are especially proud of the new opportunities JCES is providing students through its graduate student editorial board and student editorial liaison positions. From its inception, JCES committed space in each issue for at least one student-authored manuscript. Please see the call for student manuscripts on page 67. The current student piece, written by Dominique Derbigny, a graduate student at the University of Maryland at Baltimore, chronicles her community engagement experience as an undergraduate student at Elon University in Elon, N.C. Elon is a private liberal arts university repeatedly ranked at the top for engaged learning. The student piece demonstrates the relevance of engaged learning in helping students define career choice, research interests, and community citizenry.
It is important that students have a regular scholarly venue to express their thoughts, opinions, and reflections regarding community engagement—to have their voices heard. The student section of JCES, Student Voices, provides one such venue and will be handled almost entirely by students. This board will be primarily responsible for solicitation and review of student-submitted manuscripts for the section and for making recommendations to the editor for publication. Students in the liaison positions will assist the editorial assistant in day to day operation of the journal, with a focus on the Student Voices section.
The current issue of JCES contains articles that address some of the major challenges and issues facing engagement scholarship. Among them are cross-cultural education, citizen science, holistic learning, and intra-campus community engagement. The significance of engaged scholarship and its ability to promote the common good in society is seen in the cover article, “The Engaged Humanities: Principles and Practices for Public Scholarship and Teaching,” by Gregory Jay. Richard L. Conville and Ann M. Kinnell’s article, “Relational Dimensions of Service-Learning,” advances true collaboration between the primary constituent groups of service-learning (i.e., instructors, community partners, and students) by providing a common language for discussion of their inter-relationships. Combined, these two manuscripts speak to the practicality of engagement scholarship and the need to bring engagement scholarship to even higher levels conceptually and theoretically. JCES continues to grow and attract widespread interest and support across a broad spectrum. As we continue on our journey, we look to you, our readership and contributors to share your thoughts, ideas and needs with us. As editor, I appreciate the support we have received and welcome your feedback.