Department or Program

American Cultural Studies


This study surveys the form, function and potential impact of Bates College service-learning endeavors on the college aspirations of community partners from Lewiston High School. Through interviews conducted with 13 (white) juniors and seniors, I discovered that service-learning in the Lewiston community does appear to impact the college aspirations of those community partners involved, but this impact is contingent upon service-learners utilizing a focus on personal engagement and college discussions. Furthermore, I found that in regards to the existing literature on college aspirations of youth growing up in low-income areas, service-learning in low-income communities, and town-gown relationships, Lewiston appears to be in many ways an anomaly. The fact that my participant pool demonstrated high aspirations, a firm belief in the American achievement ideology, a lack of manifestation of the binary in discussions of service-learning and a desire for strong personal relationships with their Bates service-learners suggests that Lewiston as a community is not producing students to adhere to the many expectations of them, based upon both social class and race.

Level of Access

Restricted: Campus/Bates Community Only Access

Date of Graduation

Spring 5-2012

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts

Number of Pages



Available to Bates community via local IP address or Bates login.