Catholic Social Teaching and the commitment to service and justice through education is the heart of our Lasallian Mission.
Justice and Education is attentive to the educational opportunities on justice-related topics, Catholic Social Teaching, opportunities for students to be engaged in service and social justice projects, and the development of alternative break service immersion programs.
The Salinas Immersion, sponsored by the Mission and Ministry Center, aims to introduce students to the cultural, political, economic, and social issues surrounding migrant farm labor in California and in the United States as a whole. Through experiential learning students learn not only facts about migrant farm labor, but more importantly, have opportunities to establish and create relationships that reveal the complexities of being a migrant farm worker. Click on the thumbnail below to view photos of the SALINAS IMMERSION 2011.
Blackfeet [OKI-NI-SOO-KA-WA] Immersion
In Blackfeet, the phrase “OKI-NI-SOO-KA-WA” means “come to see”. The OKI-NI-SOO-KA-WA program is an intense immersion experience in which students have the opportunity to journey to the Blackfeet Native American Nation/Reservation in Browning, Montana in order to see, experience, and live for 5 days in a setting unlike any other. The OKI-NI-SOO-KA-WA experience allows students the opportunity to move beyond known borders and to live and serve in another culture.
Border Lives Immersion
The United States-Mexico border, like any border, divides nations and separates individuals. It is a place of controversy and tension. In the early 1990s, economic policies like the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and border policies, including Operation Gatekeeper and Operation Hold the Line (which led to the construction of the wall along the border) changed the reality of immigration along the southwest border. As a result, the large number of migrants crossing through that region – coming primarily from Mexico and Central America, and recently from China and Africa – have been forced eastward into the Sonoran Desert. In the past few years, hundreds of migrants have died trying to cross.
The goal of the Border Lives Immersion is to introduce students to the complex realities of immigration present in daily life on the Arizona/Mexico border. Students see and experience the migrant’s perspective and are challenged to investigate the effects of immigration on the state of Arizona and the desert itself.
Dorothy Day House
Dorothy Day House is a volunteer based organization that has provided meals and shelter for homeless and low income residents in Berkeley for over 30 years. Every second Saturday of the month, student volunteers from St. Mary's College donate their time and talents by cooking and serving a dinner for shelter guests. Meals are prepared for 40-50 people.
CATHOLIC RELIEF SERVICES
Fair Trade Fridays
On the first Friday of each month, Catholic Relief Service Ambassadors serve fair trade coffee, tea and chocolate to raise awareness of how conventional trading systems can lead to the exploitation of low-income producers overseas. Handcrafts are sometimes sold as well to support artisans from around the world.