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Feinstein Institute for Public Service

Feinstein Institute for Public Service

Feinstein Institute for Public Service

​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​“I believe we can positively influence others through community building and community organizing. The relationships we build with communities can lead to great change.”

– Molly Blake ‘16


The Feinstein Institute for Public Service was established in 1993 when Providence College was named the recipient of a grant from Rhode Island philanthropist Alan Shawn Feinstein to develop an innovative academic program that would educate community leaders by integrating community service with academic study. At the core of the Institute is the major and minor in Public and Community Service Studies. 


Through a process of focused conversations and deep reflection, the Feinstein Institute for Public Service works collaboratively to increase an understanding of and promote positive, sustainable social and economic change through community building. 

Believing that service bears witness to religious and ethical values central to the college’s mission and is at the heart of a liberal arts education in a democratic society, the Institute embraces an ethic of servant leadership in its commitment to campus and community. 

What W​​e Do

The Feinstein Institute for Public Service is comprised of faculty, staff, students, and community partners who engage in thoughtful reflection and dialogue with the shared goal of working to strengthen local communities. By working together, the Institute and its partners can provide quality service experiences for students and valuable benefits for our local communities.

On Ca​​mpus​​

  • House and support the Departments of Public and Community Service Studies and the Global Studies
  • Provide opportunities for service-learning, which combines classroom learning with community service experiences
  • Support individual faculty and departments interested in incorporating service learning into their courses 
  • Promote opportunities for students to engage in co-curricular service experiences

In the Com​mu​​nity

  • ​Develop long-term community-based partnerships​
  • Provide reflection-based seminars and professional development opportunities for community leaders, students, and alumni
  • Invite community partner leaders to co-t​each courses in the Departments of Public and Community Service Studies and Global Studies​
  • Provide resources to meet community partner needs in the form of student/faculty research and consultations; in-kind donations; and students in direct service, internship, or work study capacity​​​​
  • Manage a 1,500 square-foot storefront in the local neighborhood​ used  as a "free space" by PC and neighborhood residents for meetings, programs, events and gatherings  that build leadership capacity and strengthen community