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Meet the CEL Staff

Renee Sedlacek, Director515-271-2454

Renee has spent her career supporting the development of service-learning and co-curricular service programs at small private liberal arts institutions. Prior to joining the Drake staff in 2013 Renee served seven years as the Service-Learning Coordinator at Wartburg College and one year as an Iowa Campus Compact AmeriCorps*VISTA at Central College. Renee received her B.A. from Central College in Sociology and Psychology and her M.A. from the University of Northern Iowa in Post Secondary Education: Student Affairs, and is currently a PhD student in Education at Drake University.

As the director Renee provides provides strategic oversight of external and internal relationships that effect community-based service and learning, i.e. service-learning, engaged scholarship, and community-based research.

Headshot of Renee Sedlacek

Amanda Martin, Assistant Director 515-271-2767

Amanda Martin joined the CEL team in September of 2015. She brings more than 10 years of experience in the areas of community and national service. Amanda received her BA in Communication from Clarke University and her Masters in Student Affairs from Iowa State University. Prior to joining the CEL team, she worked for the Corporation for National and Community Service, as the Member Development Associate for AmeriCorps NCCC members. She is also an AmeriCorps VISTA alum, having served two years at the Volunteer Center of Story County in Ames. 

Amanda coordinates the Engaged Citizen Corps, supervises the Service Learning Ambassadors, and advises the student organization CAB (Community Action Board).

Headshot of Amanda Martin

Service-Learning Ambassadors

Service-Learning Ambassadors (SLAs) are students paid out of the Office of Community Engaged Learning who are committed to working with service-learning and community engagement. SLAs commit to working 6-8 hours a week on their project, working to plan and organize the event/project, recruit Drake students, and perform follow-up.

 The role of a Service Learning Ambassador is to:

  • Connect Drake students to the community and recruit volunteers to fulfill community needs
  • Educate the campus on meaningful service and social issues
  • Engage students in reflection
  • Raise awareness of community engaged learning and its impact on Drake students and the community
  • Plan and organize events and opportunities to achieve these goals
Student StaffProgram
Erin Opar Social Media and Marketing
Laura Harris Sprout Garden Coordinator
Catie Mullen and Hannah Cohen Food Recovery Coordinators
Brittany Freeman Community Engaged Learning Events & Training Coordinator
Katie Carlton IRIS Coordinator
Bri Dressel Global Service Learning and Alternative Breaks Coordinator

Faculty Fellows

Thanks to support from the Slay Fund for Social Justice and the Olson Endowment for Global Service-Learning, the office of Community Engaged Learning (OCEL) is able to support two Faculty Fellows! Faculty Fellow positions are an opportunity for Drake full-time faculty members (non-tenure-track, tenure-track, or tenured) to expand, deepen, and disseminate their mastery of community engaged learning to others.

Faculty Fellow for Community Engaged Learning

Faculty Fellow for Global Service-Learning

Anisa Fornoff, Faculty Fellow for Community Engaged Learning

Carlyn Crowe, Faculty Fellow for Community Engaged Learning

Anisa Fornoff, Associate Professor of Pharmacy Practice  Carlyn Crowe, Visiting Assistant Professor of Journalism / Internship Coordinator




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