Professor Michele Rountree is one of the co-instructors of Community Classroom, a UT Austin initiative that offers advocacy training and resources for concerned residents in low-income neighborhoods. Spearheaded by the Center for Community Engagement, this eight-week course cost $50 or less (depending on financial circumstances), and there’s only one prerequisite: a passion for making a difference.
During the spring 2019 semester, the inaugural class focused on social welfare systems with a concentration on economic and political problems faced by vulnerable populations. Co-instructed by Rountree, the class pulled from the lessons taught in her undergraduate course on the U.S. social welfare system.
“The way I teach at the university is to demystify individual opportunity to contribute to social change,” Rountree said. “Many of the issues addressed in this course weren’t new to the community members, but the lessons they learned heightened their understanding of the solutions.”