Experiential Learning

Experiential learning is essential for Illinois College students to Graduate READY! These unique learning opportunities are well-planned, supervised, and assessed to apply academic knowledge and promote interdisciplinary learning, civic engagement, career development, cultural awareness, leadership, and other professional and intellectual skills.

These unique learning experiences provide:

  • Real world situations to apply theories learned in coursework
  • Career skill preparation such as team work, interdisciplinary critical thinking, and problem solving
  • Enhanced classroom learning following the opportunity by providing concrete examples within the field to discuss while learning new theories

At Illinois College, learning that is considered “experiential” contains all of the following components:

  • Suitable planning and on-going reflection, critical analysis, and synthesis
  • Opportunities for students to take initiative, make decisions, and be accountable for the results
  • Opportunities for students to engage intellectually, civically, creatively, emotionally, socially and/or physically
  • A learning experience that includes the possibility to learn from consequences, mistakes and successes
(Adapted from University of Colorado Experiential Learning Center) Last reviewed August 11, 2016

Illinois College is committed to offering various types of experiential learning opportunities throughout a student’s time on the Hilltop to develop knowledge, skills, and values from experiences outside the traditional classes. Below are programs students can complete prior to graduating.

Internship Programs


Internship experiences connect students with organizations and businesses to have “real world” involvement in a professional work force not normally available in the classroom.

The Khalaf Al Habtoor Leadership Program


The Illinois College Leadership Program works with students to carry out the vision of justice and opportunity for all people in the community, the nation and, the world through local and international programs to enhance civic responsibility.

Community Engagement and Service


Students engage with the Jacksonville community through service projects that make an impact! This office creates connections between IC students and community leaders and organizers.

Study Abroad/Off-Campus Programs


Off-campus study programs introduce students to new cultures, traditions, and people. Programs range from domestic to international, one week to an entire semester.

Undergraduate Research Program


These programs are designed to foster collaborative scholarship between faculty, students, and staff to develop critical thinking, writing, and research skills necessary for graduate school or entry-level positions.

Celebration of Excellence


This annual event showcases student-faculty collaborative projects and independent student projects to celebrate Illinois College students’ outstanding academic achievements through oral and poster presentations.

Experiential Learning Team

If you have any questions or would like to get involved with any of these activities, please contact one of the following Experiential Learning Team members based on your interest(s):

Andrew Jones, Dean of Student Success ( :: 217.245.3010 :: Upper Tanner)

Lori Oldenettel, Dir. of Community Engagement and Service ( :: 217.245.3596 :: Caine 203)

Almut Spalding, Dir. of Global Programming ( :: 217.245.3874 :: Baxter 104)

Susie Drake, Dir. of Career Services ( :: 217.245.3041 :: Baxter 104)
Shannon Killday, Office Assistant ( :: 217.245.3041 :: Baxter 104)

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