Office of Student Life

Social Change

About Us

Student Life Social Change exists to empower and advance surrounding communities through programming for individuals and families facing poverty. While there are various systemic barriers that impact generational poverty, our collaborative efforts specifically address educational disparities within the community and are executed by undergraduate, graduate and professional students in sustained volunteer commitments.

Social Change was launched in 2012 by the late, Dr. Patricia Cunningham II, founder and former Director, with the goal of upholding the university motto “Education for Citizenship” by training Ohio State students to be change agents in the Hilltop, Linden, Franklinton, Weinland Park and Near Eastside neighborhoods.

While we focus on youth development in the context of education advancement and access, we also assist, collaborate with and support various community partners in their holistic neighborhood transformation efforts within the city and state.


We bring together the communities of The Ohio State University and the State of Ohio through sustainable, community-driven, place-based, multi-disciplinary programs that empower the local community and advance the well-being of the people of Ohio.


To advance the well-being of the people of Ohio by mobilizing university resources, both human and fiscal, to deliver comprehensive programming to maximize holistic community development through neighborhood transformation.


  • Collaborative decision-making to inform best practices
  • Creating civic literacy, inquiry and action
  • Honoring diversity by fighting for justice
  • Developing empathy with social and emotional intelligence

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