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Norton Family Center for the Common Good

Exploring and practicing "the best self and the common good."

The Norton Family Center for the Common Good encourages in students an expanded understanding of their roles as citizens in a diverse democracy and fosters an active, engaged approach to citizenship in our global society. Providing programs, resources and support in classroom and extra-curricular experiences, the Center inspires students to identify, create, and sustain ideas and actions on behalf of the common good in local-to-global contexts. The Center’s curricular and community activities support the school’s mission which exhorts Loomis Chaffee students to serve “the best self and the common good.”

Throughout the year, freshmen participate in the CCG Freshman Seminars, often co-facilitated by upperclassmen. School-wide Dialogues in the Common Good center on themes drawn from school, local, national, or world issues, while bi-weekly class meetings feature Talks in the Common Good, personal narratives or position statements which illuminate the theme of “the common good.”

The Center for Common Good also actively supports and collaborates with Community Service, the Community Work Program, the Center for Global Studies, and the emerging Agriculture Program.

The Norton Center for the Common Good enjoys the good counsel and enthusiastic support of a Faculty Advisory Board as well as a Student Committee in the Common Good. Meet the directors.

Recent Dialogues, Freshman Seminars, and Other Programs

High school students from Grow Hartford and LC students with a shared interest in food justice forged a partnership on Monday, gathering on the Island for a dinner and discussion.

Author and history professor Jelani Cobb addressed an all-school audience on Thursday, putting recent racially-charged incidents in the United States into the broader context of the country's cyclical history of racial inequality.

Author and educator Jelani Cobb will discuss the topic "Half Life of Freedom: Race and Democracy in the 21st Century" at an all-school convocation on Thursday, April 16.

A Mardi Gras feast hosted by the student-run Pelican Service Organization (PSO) on February 26 raised more than $1,500 for NicaPhoto, a grass-roots organization dedicated to helping break the cycle poverty in Nicaragua.

Filmmaker Melissa Donovan '81 attended an on-campus screening of her award-winning documentary Zemene on Monday and visited classes on Tuesday to talk with students about her work and the making of the film, which follows a young Ethiopian girl as she seeks treatment for a life-threatening curvature of her spine.

Filmmaker Melissa Donovan '81 returns to campus on Monday, February 23, to present Zemene, her award-winning documentary. The free screening and Q&A session with Melissa will be held in Hubbard Performance Hall from 7 to 8:30 p.m. and is open to the public.

Award-winning film director Melissa Donovan LC '81 will return to the Island for a special showing of her latest film, Zemene.
Through readings, personal narratives, and film, students will extend the energy and lessons of the MLK Convocation through engagement in their Freshman Seminar classes.
Key administrators will demystify the course selection process for our youngest Pelicans.
The New York Times Editorial Board provided our seminar students with a wide array of issues and conundrums as we reviewed their fifteen "most noteworthy stories" from 2014.

CCG Events

9/11 - Dialogue on Ferguson, co-sponsored by PRISM

9/26
 - Westminster Teaching Symposium
Learning in Service: Theory and Practice - Al Freihofer presented the work of The Norton Center to attendees gathered for the purpose of sharing best practices in service learning and social engagement. Video

10/3 - Talks in the Common Good 

10/15 - Community Service Day
The CCG will host 15 students in a day-long exploration of the power of advocacy through research, analysis, fashioning a position statement, and initiating action.  

10/15 -  CCG Dialogue in the Common Good: The Dance Culture at Loomis Chaffee

10/17 -  Parents’ Weekend: Center for the Common Good Open House

10/31 - Talks in the Common Good


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