HuCo Student Wins CSL Award

Community Service-Learning | Office of Interdisciplinary Studies - 20 March 2017

Congratulations to Kenzie Gordon, the 2017 recipient of the Boardwalk Rental Communities Learning & Change Award (BRCLCA). This annual award provides funding of up to $10,000 to a University of Alberta student who creates, designs, and executes a summer project in collaboration with a community partner to address community priorities through research, practice, and reflection. Kenzie's award-winning project is a partnership with the Sexual Assault Centre of Edmonton (SACE) to develop a module on video games for their Public Education department.

Kenzie Gordon is a first-year MA student in the Humanities Computing program (Office of Interdisciplinary Studies) with prior CSL course experience and a past participant in the Non-Profit Board Internship program.

Says Kenzie, "After completing my BA at the U of A, I went on to do a Bachelor of Social Work and then worked for several years as a front-line outreach worker in the field of domestic violence. I came back to the U of A for my Master's because I'm interested in exploring ways that video games can be used as violence prevention tools and integrated into the work of the non-profit sector."

"This project proposal comes from my knowledge in the field of domestic and sexual violence and my belief in the value of educating youth to be critical consumers of media that spreads messages about these forms of violence. SACE does a lot of great education work with youth and adults throughout Edmonton on understanding sexual violence and healthy relationships, and learning to critique depictions of these things in popular culture, but they don't currently have anything in their curriculum related to video games.

"Together we hope to develop some engaging new materials that SACE can use to start conversations about video games. This project has the potential to empower youth to better understand the cultural messages they receive about consent and sexual/romantic relationships. It is critical that young adults are well-informed about their rights and what constitutes consent, and what constitutes sexual or domestic violence in a relationship, as they will likely establish relationship patterns as teens that last into their adult lives."

Kenzie plans to begin working on this project starting at the end of April throughout the summer until August 2017. Once the module has been successfully developed, Kenzie will host a launch event and workshop with SACE staff, volunteers and their community partners to celebrate the completion of the project.

"I'm honored to have received the BRCLCA award this year and look forward to the opportunity to create something unique with my community partner!"