RISE for the Community

Image of downtown Seattle and Mount Rainier at sunset to indicate community

Upcoming Workshops for Community

Stepping Out & Stepping Into: Ethical Community Engagement for a More Equitable World
Tuesday, November 9, 1:30-3:30pm

So, you want to make a difference in the world around you? Perhaps you want to encourage your students to do the same? But maybe you feel uncomfortable, unprepared, and uncertain. Join us as we examine how to engage with, learn from, and contribute to the community in an ethical manner. We will examine how bias, anti-racism, privilege, storytelling, and more fit into how you step into new community situations, so you have more confidence to step out and make the world a better, more equitable place.

This interactive workshop has been designed with inputs from the community and from other academic institutions. It is open to anyone associated with Bellevue College, as well as to the broader community.

Register for Stepping Out & Stepping Into: Ethical Community Engagement for a More Equitable World

Community engagement and enrichment is a core theme of Bellevue College. The college strives to be a leader and a partner in building a vibrant region. It collaborates with social service organizations, business and trade groups, government agencies, and other schools and colleges to develop and refine educational programs that prepare individuals for academic success, employment, and lifelong learning.

The RISE Learning Institute is at the center of this work. RISE builds and nurtures partnerships between the college and the greater community.

BC aims to be the region’s college of choice, and it seeks to support the community that supports it. The RISE Learning Institute knows that BC students have profound learning experiences when they are engaged first-hand in internships, project-based learning, and service opportunities that address issues in our communities. BC students acquire a sense of civic responsibility, apply and deepen their learning, and make a real impact. In return, our partners benefit from the research and service contributions of our students and faculty. Furthermore, BC fuels the region’s economic vitality: our student interns make important contributions at dozens of organizations, our alumni start new businesses and contribute valuable ideas to existing ones, and our programs produce graduates with the skills needed in our communities.

RISE is for the community.

RISE is Research

RISE works with research organizations and community partners in many ways.  We:

  • Help you strategize and, when needed, connect you to the right parties on campus.
  • Build formal collaborations and partnerships, such as our faculty’s affiliation with the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Institute.
  • Provide logistical support and letters of commitment to organizations looking to recruit diverse community college students for research opportunities.
  • Rent out laboratory space for partners conducting research in the life sciences.
  • Engage in community-based research by working with partners on research issues facing their organizations or their communities.

If you would like to partner with RISE on a research initiative, please speak with Michael Reese at michael.reese@bellevuecollege.edu or 425.564.4066.

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center

Develop research internships for students. Learn more about the Collaboration between Bellevue College and Fred Hutch.

RISE is Innovation

RISE is a passionate supporter of organizations that promote social and economic innovation.  We partner with incubators, accelerators, and similar networks that are interested in working with innovative BC students and faculty.  For example, RISE co-sponsored the first annual Bellevue Tech Expo at ExtraSlice to build connections between BC students and startup firms and social ventures, and we are supporting the efforts of students who are bringing a CodeDay event to the Eastside. We are also especially interested in social innovation and social entrepreneurship.

In addition, we seek to create spaces that facilitate innovation on our own campus.

If you would like to discuss collaborating on an initiative related to innovation, please contact Michael Reese at 425.564.4066 or michael.reese@bellevuecollege.edu



Experiential learning opportunities and other forms of collaboration.

RISE is Service

By bringing students into the community, RISE enhances student learning while supporting non-profit and government organizations doing incredible work.  Whether they are fighting injustice or providing social services, educating the region’s future leaders or protecting the region’s ecosystems, feeding the needy or housing the homeless, the organizations on the Eastside and across King County do amazing things, and BC and RISE work to support them.

Academic Engagement: Community agencies have many different ways to engage with classes here at Bellevue College, and thus help to shape the ways in which our students connect with the world around them. We are always looking for guest speakers, mentorship, shadowing, and more. Agencies can pose questions that give guidance to student projects. Or they can invite students to visit. Perhaps the most meaningful form of engagement is through service-learning.

Service-Learning: This teaching methodology integrates community-based service into a classroom syllabus. The experiences that come from volunteering with your agency help students better understand their learning content in context, build much-desired transferable skills, and contribute to a sense of civic responsibility. Students can volunteer at the ground level with your agency, create products or offer support, assist with community outreach and education, and more. Project and volunteering opportunities can range from writing to interior design, from environmental sustainability to IT support, from immigrant storytelling to math tutoring, and everywhere in between. We see our partner agencies as co-educators in the process of building connections between the classroom and the community.

Resources for Current Partners: Bellevue College works with agencies throughout the greater King County region. If your agency already partners with us, here are some resources:

  • BC in the Community, also known as our Galaxy Digital service-learning portal, allows you to list your current and upcoming volunteer opportunities and events. Students can sign up and post hours toward these opportunities. Additionally, all service-learning classes utilize this system to facilitate the placement process. BC in the Community is an excellent way for your organization to market itself to the BC community. NOTE: Agencies must contact RISE before they can sign up for this service.
  • CONNECT! is the best way for an agency to post job and internship opportunities for BC students.
  • Our Service-Learning Partner Manual gives information about our students and our processes.
  • These FAQs help explain how our partner agencies can best use the BC in the Community portal.

For more information about how you can partner with BC and RISE on classroom-based service-learning projects, please speak with Sapan Parekh at sapan.parekh@bellevuecollege.edu or 425.564.4031.

Eastside Legal Assistance Program

Logo for ELAP

Service-learning opportunities for students in areas related to legal assistance for immigrants & refugees, people experiencing homelessness, and survivors of domestic violence.

“ELAP has been privileged to be a part of the RISE Learning Institute for the past couple of years. Service-learning is an integral part of training the current and future leaders of our community, and allows the students engaged in this program the opportunity to see the work being done by various organizations from the ground level.”

RISE is Experiential Learning

The RISE Learning Institute connects BC to companies and community organizations throughout the region via experiential learning opportunities.  The most common of these is internships, which provide students with professional development in a field of interest while building their skills and professional connections.  Internship providers gain someone who is willing to learn and contribute to the organization for a short period of time, while they help to nurture potential leaders in their field.

Internships are managed through Bellevue College’s Center for Career Connections, which is a part of RISE.  Visit the Academic Internship Program site for more information about how to become an internship partner. Feel free to also register for CONNECT!, Bellevue College’s job and internship portal.

If you have any questions about internships at Bellevue College, please contact Chiew Jones at 425.564.2476 or chiew.jones@bellevuecollege.edu.

Washington Technology Industry Association

Washington Technology Industry Association

Experiential learning opportunities, internships and other forms of collaboration.

Last Updated October 6, 2021