Connecting to Community

The Education Studies Program values community-engaged learning, and many courses include work with local schools, educational institutions, and educationally-minded organizations in Amherst and beyond. Some of these partnerships reflect deep and long-term relationships between Amherst and members of the community. They result in programs or collaborations that are offered as part of particular courses on a regular basis. 

Three students walk toward a brick building on a college campus.

Collab For College - C4C

Spring 2024

Collab 4 College brings together students enrolled in Amherst College Education Studies courses staff and students from Amherst-Pelham Regional Schools (ARPS) to plan a college access day. The day involves 40+ ARPS middle schoolers and high schoolers visiting Amherst College to experience campus both as potential students and as members of the greater Amherst community. The program runs from February–May.

Fostering strong relationships among Amherst College students and ARPS students is at the core of C4C. Faculty, staff, and students at both institutions work together over the course of a semester to connect and plan college access day in two important ways:

Students in “Writing the College Experience” work with sophomores and juniors from Amherst-Pelham Regional School District to consider questions of educational equity, belonging, and college access as they learn about college level writing. Together, they design and hold workshops for students on college access day.

Students in “Race, Education and Belonging” work with middle school students on a weekly basis during the spring semester as part of the Morning Movement & Mentoring program to build familiarity and relationships before the college access event. Building on their connections with students at ARPS, students at Amherst take the lead in planning many events for college access day, including designing and giving interactive, educational tours.

C4C: Behind the Scenes

The C4C program aims to:

  • support student examination of educational equity and belonging across K-12 and higher education contexts; 
  • strengthen students' capacity to reflect on and articulate their experiences and learning in written form;
  • break down barriers of access between Amherst College and ARPS;
  • build connections between Amherst College and ARPS by sharing and building knowledge and resources together.


  • Professor Kristen Luschen (instructor of EDST 200 and chair of the Education Studies Program)
  • Senior Lecturer Kristina Reardon (instructor of ENGL/EDST 121 and director of Intensive Writing)
  • Zoe Jacobs Feinstein (associate director of community-engaged learning in the Center for Community Engagement)
  • Margo Pedersen, C4C Student Coordinator 
  • Erica Ayala, C4C Student Coordinator


  • Dwayne Chamble, Out of School Time Coordinator, ARPS 
  • Michelle Rodriguez, STS Case Manager, ARPS Family Center