About the Instructor
Mary-Beth Raddon, an associate professor in the Faculty of Social Sciences, is the recipient of a 2010 Chancellor's Chair for Teaching Excellence. She is also the author of the book Community and Money: Men and Women Making Change (Black Rose, 2003).
With a PhD and MA from the University of Toronto and a BA from McMaster University, Mary-Beth has long been community minded in her research interests. She researches the sociology of money, with special interest in local currencies and philanthropy. She has taught courses in research design, qualitative methods, and community-based and activist responses to poverty. She is particularly interested in course projects that help students bring their ideas to an audience. She is excited to do more of that with Foundations in Service Learning.
Comments by Professor Raddon’s former students from a similar course:
“I really liked that we got to go out and do things and see things. I went to a soup kitchen, and we all went to [a local food bank]. We really don't get to do that a lot in other classes. We got to go out and actually see the things we were learning about and put it all in perspective.”
“I felt a lot of compassion for the issues that we talked about… and a lot of surprise as well with just how severe the situation is. A lot of people don’t realize how many people are living in poverty and how many people are hungry and are not able to make ends meet. Again it was really surprising and really influential to hear about these kinds of things and Mary-Beth just was amazing because you could tell how knowledgeable and how passionate she was about the subject matter. So I really enjoyed it. I thought it was really interesting. Even the readings that we did were just really interesting and really informative.”
“We actually got to go and see rather than just talk about it. It was like a real experience. And [the experiences] really helped to critically look at the readings rather than just read them and try to remember them, and then the tests helped us actually answer questions and look at them more deeply.”
“The trip to the [food bank] was a real eye-opener in terms of local establishments and organizations that are actually helping to fight poverty. We always hear about big idealistic solutions to poverty but we never actually see the hands-on side of it. We were actually going there, contributing, bringing in food and fundraising and [some of us then wrote letters about it]. It was also a nice change from the typical academic setting of the school and the classroom.”
Professor Mary-Beth Raddon