Teaching and Learning for Social Impact

Contextualizing St. Louis

We live, we teach, and we learn in St. Louis. It only makes sense that we integrate St. Louis in its many contexts – social, political, historical – into our work through research and teaching.
Contextualizing St. Louis can help bridge the divide between theory and practice, giving our work renewed relevance and make its impact tangible and visible to our students and the broader community. Our connection to place strengthens a sense of purpose and belonging that’s invaluable to understanding how we ourselves can positively impact social fabrics.  

The resources provided below are meant to be a starting place. They should open up new lines of inquiry and better position us to introduce St. Louis to our work and our classrooms. When contextualizing St. Louis, it is important to complicate dominate narratives with the inclusion of many voices, for that reason, no list of resources would ever suffice to help one say they “know St. Louis." Knowing St. Louis is a continued action in which we always seek new knowledge, new histories, new stories, and new voices. Including a cross section of voices and perspectives often means presenting students with opposing storytelling and asking them to make sense of it – we must do the same. Some of that work is done directly with community through community engaged learning, but that work can also be done by developing relationships with our neighbors and welcoming community voice into our professional domains.  

Curated Relevant Content






Nichole Murphy
Community Engagement Fellow






Stefani Weeden-Smith
Stefani Weeden-Smith
Assistant Director for Community Engagement






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