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Projects with Promise

Vol. 18 No. 2

Transformational Learning and Community Development: Early Reflections on Professional and Community Engagement at Macquarie University

  • Felicity Rawlings-Sanaei
  • Judyth Sachs
June 20, 2014


Professional and Community Engagement (PACE) at Macquarie University offers undergraduate students experiential learning opportunities with local, regional, and international partners. In PACE projects, students work toward meeting the partner’s organizational goals while they develop their capabilities, learn through the process of engagement, and gain academic credit. This article outlines the context that gave rise to PACE and discusses the rationale behind its establishment. Further, it explores how academic rigor and a strategic approach coupled with a well-integrated governance and organizational structure have been pivotal in addressing challenges. Particular attention is given to PACE International activities managed with Australian Volunteers International. The potential for research related to PACE is also discussed.