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102 Osborne Admin Building University of South Carolina
Columbia, SC 29208
Phone: (803) 777-2808
Fax: (803) 777-9502

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Community Engagement & Service

COCES Program Features

Each month, the COCES features projects and programs in our community.


  • The Nature-Based Inquiry (NBI) professional development model centers around the design and use of outdoor "classrooms" that take advantage of natural educational assets on school campuses.
  • The Impact of Incarceration on Families project utilizes SC’s powerful, statewide integrated data system to examine impacts of incarceration in a novel way, tapping administrative data from corrections, juvenile justice, mental health, social services, substance use services, healthcare, and education.


  • The Carolina LifeSong Initiative provides piano lessons and music experiences for students with autism and other special needs. This unique program is the result of the work of Dr. Scott Price - a leading figure in the piano pedagogy field.


  • The USC Pen Pals program was aimed at making a better connection between the mathematics children learn in elementary school and the mathematics that future teachers study in their undergraduate program. Among other activities, the collaborators paired their students for the weekly exchange of “math letters.”
  • Youth Capabilities and Leadership Action to Promote Healthy Relationships
    About 1 in 3 youth and young adults has experienced some form of teen dating violence, including psychological and physical violence. The YCLAP-HR project is in collaboration with community partners at Irmo High School and School District Five of Lexington and Richland Counties. The goal of Phase I was to use focus groups and interviews listen carefully to youth, parents, school personnel, and district and state officials to gain a better understanding of multi-level prevention needs.


  • The Children's Physical Activity Research Group (CPARG), led by Dr. Russell Pate, is an interdisciplinary team of faculty, staff, and graduate students who are dedicated to expanding the body of knowledge on physical activity and its promotion in children and adolescents. The overarching aim of CPARG is to enhance the health of young people by generating the knowledge needed to design and implement effective public health policies for promotion of physical activity.
  • University of South Carolina School of Law Pro Bono Program: This vibrant, comprehensive and ever evolving program is the first voluntary pro bono program in the US. The challenge has always been to find sufficient meaningful placements and organizations in a fairly rural state. Creative collaborations, the utilization of technology and long distance volunteering have helped match law students with pro bono attorneys and organizations needing assistance. 




  • Ghosts of the Horseshoe, a mobile interactive application, or “critical interactive,” deploys game mechanics, as well as Augmented Reality (AR) and GPS functionality, in order to generate awareness of and questioning about this historic grassy space at the center of the USC campus. It draws participants into relation with history and historical figures by turning the mobile micro screen into a “window” onto the past, one whose real-time image responds to touch, gesture, and location.
  • The A. C. Moore Herbarium of the University of South Carolina is an important part of the College of Arts and Sciences at USC (Columbia Campus). As a public resource, the Herbarium is an outstanding modern reference collection for identifying plants, including weeds that have been recently introduced into our state, as well as uncommon or threatened species. Now over 100 years old, the A. C. Moore Herbarium continues to be a resource for botanical knowledge, through teaching, research and public service.


  • Computer Science Outreach to South Carolina High Schools
    Duncan Buell (Computer Science and Engineering) has been working for several years in outreach to South Carolina high schools on behalf of computer science. Enrollments in computer science nationally are low, in spite of the fact Computer Science is the degree that leads to three in five jobs in all of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) and four in five jobs for graduates of the College of Engineering and Computing at USC.
  • Always Coming Home: The American Female Veteran Experience seeks to document the experiences of women veterans whose return to civilian life has been affected by diverse combat and service situations but who have had little opportunity to share their experiences with the public.


  • The Composition of Support Groups in the LGBT Community – Input from Consumers
    There is little guidance on the optimal composition of support-groups in the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender (LGBT) community, or if family/family-members-of-choice (FMOC) can play any role in a support group.  The objective of this study was to: (1) determine if groups of mixed LGBT orientations are as acceptable as groups of just one orientation/ gender identity; and (2) determine the acceptability/feasibility of involving a participant-selected family member/FMOC in a support group.
  • CreateAthon@USC
    October 25-26, 2013
    Faculty and students involved in the first CreateAthon@USC sprang into perpetual motion with the fall semester, and they won’t take any deep breaths until after its over. It’s all in a night’s work. All for a good cause (or six).


  • Season of Women: A Celebration of Women Artists
    October 3-10, 2013
    "Season of Women: A Celebration of Women Artists", sponsored by Opera-tunity Foundation, is a broad-based, dynamic program of performance, creative, and visual arts including music, dance, art, drama and literature.  The project brings to the fore the captivating presence of women artists, their artistic compositions and creations, and cross-spectrum concerts and features of women’s contributions to the arts.


  • Four piece instrument ensemble plays for residentsMusic Community Visits Still Hopes Community for the Holidays
    The students of the Music Community, our on-campus residential hall, visited the Still Hopes retirement/assisted living community in December to share holiday music with residents.
  • Aphasia Reading Groups
    The USC Speech & Hearing Research Center hosts a group for adults who have lost some of their reading ability due to a neurological event or condition. Participants get together to visit, discuss the book, and practice reading in a safe and supportive environment.

    Any adult with aphasia who would like to participate, please contact Dr. Charley Adams at 803-777-2605 or charley@sc.edu


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