• Experiential Learning

    At LaGuardia Community College, we believe that experiential learning should harness both the individual and collective knowledge, experience, and passion of our students, faculty, staff, and stakeholders to transform ourselves and the world. 

  • Experiential Learning at LaGuardia consists of a spectrum of interactive learning activities that challenge students to apply acquired competencies, skills and concepts in real-world applications that enhance their ability to compete in the dynamic labor market while advancing their academic aspirations.

  • At CUNY, experiential and applied learning opportunities should be a transformational component of the undergraduate experience. Educational research indicates that high-impact practices that take ideas and concepts beyond the classroom can increase rates of student retention and student engagement, and can be beneficial in shaping their longer-term personal development as critical and creative thinkers. These practices  take many different forms, all of which allow “learners to have direct experience and focused reflection in order to increase knowledge, develop skills, clarify values, and develop individual capacity to contribute to their communities” (Association for Experiential Education). 


    Building upon CUNY’s work further defining experiential learning, LaGuardia aspires to transform the educational experiences of our students and faculty so that classroom learning and applied learning both drive student success.


    At LaGuardia Community College, we believe that experiential learning should harness both the individual and collective knowledge, experience, and passion of our students, faculty, staff, and stakeholders to transform ourselves and the world. 

    We aim to provide quality experiential learning opportunities to a diverse body of students. Our faculty and staff collaboratively and purposefully engage students by connecting the classroom with co-curricular activities – creating applied learning and reflection opportunities to further stimulate their interests. In programs that require experiential learning, students will demonstrate evidence of their work via a reflective piece using ePortfolio. LaGuardia’s experiential learning approach enhances students’ knowledge and skills. Our collective efforts are aimed to create comprehensive and inclusive opportunities for students as aligned to their educational and career goals – we seek transparency in planning and execution of our work by using specific measurable outcomes to demonstrate academic excellence and student success. Examples of Experiential Learning Opportunities at LaGuardia include:

    • Internships
    • Service Learning / Community Service
    • Clinical Preparation / Practicum
    • Research / Field Study
    • Campus or University-based work and/or Leadership
    • Civic Engagement
    • International Applied Learning
    • Performance-Based Projects, Ensembles and Exhibitions

    Internship – Paid or Unpaid:
    Paid internship opportunities are often organized through Institutional Advancement to support opportunities for students in Business and Technology, English, and Humanities majors. Unpaid internship opportunities are organized by a few College areas, including: the Business and Technology, English, and Humanities departments and are often obtained through faculty outreach.

    Service Learning/Community Service:
    A variety of service learning opportunities are facilitated through Student Life groups, organizations and organized activities.  It also includes our students who participate in the LAGCC’s President’s Society.

    Clinical Preparation/Practicum: 
    Clinical preparation and practicums from the college’s ten allied health science and teacher education programs. 

    Research/ Field Study: 
    Research and field study experiences facilitated through in part by the Math, Engineering, and Computer Science (MEC), Natural Science, and Social Science departments. This includes a summer intercollegiate partnership with Barnard College.

    Campus- or University-Based Work and/or Leadership:  
    Students engaged in peer advisement and mentorship through LaGuardia’s Center for Teaching and Learning and students who are math, science, English and modern language tutors. 

    Civic Engagement: 
    ALL LaGuardia students complete an Urban Studies course, which may include a field work component; Urban Studies is a college requirement for graduation. 

    International Applied Learning: 
    International Applied Learning includes study abroad experiences, as well as student experiences traveling overseas with faculty members for research projects.

    Performance-Based Projects, Ensembles and Exhibitions:
     Students can engage in theatrical productions, photography and fine arts exhibitions, musical groups and ensembles, and other experiential programs in related Humanities disciplines.

    What is Experiential Learning? 
    At LaGuardia, Experiential Learning is the process of learning through “hands-on” and interactive activities. Experiential learning is any opportunity that bridges what you are learning “in theory” inside the classroom with “doing” outside in the “real world.”  

    How will my participation in Experiential Learning support my career path?
    Experiential Learning Opportunities help you build your skills sets, knowledge base, professional contacts, and experience in order to give you a competitive advantage when looking for work or applying to a senior college after graduation from LaGuardia. 

    What is the difference between Experiential Learning Opportunity and Job Placement?
    While some students who participate in  Experiential Learning Opportunities are compensated with a salary or stipend, and even offered a permanent position upon successful completion,  these opportunities are not the same as Job Placement. With an Experiential Learning Opportunity, the job experience that you are engaged in is tied to your major. As such, you are evaluated on your work performance, and often, that evaluation becomes a part of your grade if the work is tied to an academic course in your program of study. With Job Placement, while you are guaranteed a salary -- you may or may not be building skills and experience that are directly related to your degree.

    Is participating in Experiential Learning a requirement for Graduation?
    Completing an Experiential Learning Opportunity is only a requirement for graduation if it is required by your major. Currently, students are required to take a mandatory internship in the Business and Technology and Health Sciences departments.  If you are not sure if you are required to do an internship or Experiential Learning Opportunity, check with the program director for your major.

    Do I earn credits for Experiential Learning?
    It depends on your major -- speak to a faculty member from your major or program director to learn more.

    Do I need to have a specific GPA to participate in an Experiential Learning Opportunitty?
    You need to be a student in good standing in order to take advantage of Experiential Learning Opportunities offered at LaGuardia. Specific employers may require a minimum GPA or skill set in order to be considered eligible to participate.

    Who do I speak to about starting an Experiential Learning Opportunities?
    The best place to start is to speak with the Department or Program Director for your Major. Whether its academic internships or faculty sponsored resource opportunities, many majors offer formal experiential learning opportunities. Some Experiential Learning Opportunities are also offered through participation in non-academic activities such as the President’s Society, Student Government, Honor Society, and Student Life. 

    If your department does not offer any Experiential Learning Opportunutites, please contact the Experiential Learning Manager at ELO@lagcc.cuny.edu and they will work with you to find an opportunity that’s right for you.