November 2019 Newsletter

Welcome to the CHER November Newsletter! At the Center for Hartford Engagement & Research at Trinity College our mission is to strengthen educational partnerships with students, faculty, staff, and Hartford. Over the past few months we’ve created videos with social change organizations, collaborated across programs to benefit our mentoring programs, toured the State Capitol, delivered Thanksgiving baskets, and strengthened relationships with our Hartford community partners. Take a look at the highlights below! If you are interested in getting involved or partnering with CHER programs, be sure to contact us.

Drop In to the Liberal Arts Action Lab Digital Poster Fair Monday December 9th

Please join us on Monday, December 9th for the Liberal Arts Action Lab Digital Poster Fair from 4-6pm at 10 Constitution Plaza, Hartford, CT. This event is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served. Drop-in anytime between 4-6:00 pm to see the results of the Fall 2019 Action Lab research projects: The Hurricane Maria Relocation Project with Lilly Sin Barreras, the Youth Homelessness Project with CT Coalition to End Homelessness, the Absentee Landlord Project with SINA, and the Youth Sports Project with Active City. Additionally, the Action Lab is excited to announce 5 teams for Spring 2020, read about them here!

Math, Gerrymandering, and Social Justice: Trinity Students Work in Redistricting Lab and Tour State Capitol

Why are our legislative district maps shaped the way they are? Students in Professor Kyle Evans’ MATH/POLS 128: Math and Redistricting Community Learning course are learning how to analyze U.S. Census and election data and different mathematical approaches used to analyze maps. Thanks to Professor Evans, Trinity’s Raether Library is now home to what’s called the “Redistricting Lab.” Harrison Silver ‘22 said, “Kyle is definitely one of my favorite professors and was honestly the first person to make math interesting for me. We’re combining math with tackling real world problems like gerrymandering. And, this course has given us the ability to have a more in-depth perspective using Maptitude, a software state governments use for redistricting, that no other college in the nation has access to.Read more about the course on our blog.

Community Service & Civic Engagement Hosts Annual Holiday Drives: Thanksgiving Turkey Baskets and Sponsor a Snowman

It’s Holiday Drive season! This weekend the ACES Thanksgiving Drive packaged and delivered 100 Thanksgiving baskets with turkeys to community partners at ELAMS and Hands on Hartford (Thank you Elizabeth Densen ‘22, Michaela Anton ‘22, Erin Evangelista ‘20, Brooke Agro ‘22, Joe Barber and Beatrice Alicea, John-Michael Mason, Kevin McDermott, Dave Tatem, and many others!) Also ongoing is the annual Sponsor-a-Snowman drive where participants can sponsor gifts for children and teenagers attending a holiday party at Interval House, a Hartford domestic violence shelter. For more information about how to sponsor one of the 145 gifts, contact Beatrice Alicea, Trinity Assistant Director of Community Service & Civic Engagement at, call (860) 297-2160. Top left photo repost from Hands on Hartford. Read more about the drives on our blog here!

JZ-AMP Middle School Mentees Learn Trinfo Café Technology Skills and Community Movement



This semester, HMTCA middle school students in the Jones-Zimmermann Academic Mentoring Program and their Trinity student mentors have had the opportunity to engage in various enrichment activities including a technology series and movement session, thanks to the collaboration across programs here at CHER. For the technology series, Trinfo Café student worker Matin Yaqubi ‘23 and Program Manager Ari Basche designed a “Dream Vacation” technology series curriculum where students created an informational video using Adobe Spark. Additionally, the mentees had a completely new experience when they joined Professor Rebecca Pappas’ THDN 272: Arts in Action Community Learning course for a community movement session. Read more on our blog here.

Community Action GatewayShares Social Change Videos with Hartford Partners

Last week, First Year Community Action Gateway students had dinner and shared their final 1-minute videos they made with five Hartford community partners: the Connecticut Women’s Education and Legal Fund, Night Fall, Make the Road CT, Public Allies CT, and the Katal Center for Health, Equity, and Justice. The room was filled with community partners, current gateway students and alumni, and CHER team members who reflected on the different ways social change is happening in Hartford and how we tell that story. Take a look at our video recap of the night above, and see more about the Community Action Gateway program on our blog.

Trinity ConnPIRG Student Leaders Honored at Connecticut Civic Ambassadors Summit

The Center for Hartford Engagement & Research congratulates Caroline Munn ‘21 who was honored as a Connecticut Civic Ambassador this past weekend at the CT Civic Ambassadors Summit at Hartford Public Library. Caroline also served as a panelist at the summit where she discussed her leadership in Trinity’s chapter of ConnPIRG alongside civic and community leaders of all ages as well as keynote speaker and author of “Generation Citizen: The Power of Youth in Our Politics,” Scott Warren. Thank you to Joe Barber and Beatrice Alicea in the Office of Community Service and Civic Engagement and Val Ramos of Everyday Democracy for your collaboration! Read more in this post by community partner Vanessa Williams at Everyday Democracy.

Community Learning Faculty Fellows (CLIFF) Workshop: Hartford Partnerships and Perspective-Building Teaching

Over the last few months, Trinity faculty members Leah Cassorla, Elise Castillo, Rachel Moskowitz, Ibrahim Shikaki, and Lynn Sullivan have been working closely together with Director of Community Learning Megan Faver Hartline and CHER Director Jack Dougherty in the Community Learning Faculty Fellows program. Faculty are introduced to the key components of Community Learning at Trinity, which include experiential learning, collaborative partnerships, and perspective-building relationships. Instead of finding problems to fix in Hartford, they are encouraged to engage in mutually-beneficial  partnerships that engage the community as a source of expertise. Director of Community Learning Megan Hartline said, “We hope [these types of partnerships] will have long-term benefits for our students and community partners in the decades to come.” Read more on our blog here.

Trinity Faculty: Educate Women in Prison and Teach Community Learning Focused on Incarceration

The Office of Community Learning seeks faculty members to continue prison education at York Correctional Institution and Community Learning courses on incarceration. Free to Succeed (FTS) is a unique program for women that begins during their incarceration at York, and engages with courses such as HRST 373 Human Rights and Performance and ENGL 209 Prison Literature. If you are a faculty member interested in learning more about these opportunities, contact,, and Read more on our blog!

Report: Trinity Student Voting with NESCAC Comparison, 2016 and 2018

Looking ahead to the 2020 election, Trinity and other schools in the New England Small College Athletic Conference are participating in NESCAC Votes, a friendly competition that also included an October Summit for member campuses to share strategies to increase student voting. How much will Trinity College student voting improve for the NESCAC Votes 2020 challenge? Read more on our blog.

CHER Director:
Jack Dougherty
CHER Communications & Data Assistant: Erica Crowley
Community Learning Director: Megan Faver Hartline
Community Service and Civic Engagement Director: Joe Barber
Community Service and Civic Engagement Assistant Director: Beatrice Alicea
Liberal Arts Action Lab Director: Megan Brown
   Communications and Program Assistant: Morgan Finn
Trinfo.Cafe and Office of Community Relations Director: Carlos Espinosa
   Program Manager: Arianna Basche
HMTCA-Trinity Partnership Director: Robert Cotto Jr.