Engage in Experiences

students at service event

At the Wackerlin Center, we encourage students to engage with the world as local and global citizens through acts of service and solidarity. As part of our commitment to help students develop into leaders, we offer the following initiatives, programs, and volunteer experiences.

Volunteer Experiences

The Wackerlin Center partners with several local agencies to provide opportunities for students to give back to the surrounding AU community. Students and student groups interested in volunteering can fill out our interest form to be matched with possible experiences.

Monthly Events

The Wackerlin Center offers a variety of events and programming throughout the academic year, including Cultural Exchange, which is a monthly diversity discussion series focused on identity and culture. View our monthly events calendar.

Morning of Service

Each semester, the Wackerlin Center offers an opportunity for students, faculty, and staff to complete service projects throughout our surrounding communities. 

Social Impact Trips

Students can serve with peers and staff during spring break through social impact trips. These week-long trips encourage students to learn about a social issue affecting a vulnerable population, animal life, or the environment through hands-on service.

Revive Retreat

The Wackerlin Center hosts a retreat during winter break where students can participate in communal meals, guided reflections, morning trail walks, stretching and meditation, and quiet rest to begin the new year refreshed. Applications are being accepted for the 2024 Revive Retreat, taking place on January 4-5, 2024, at the Q Center in St. Charles, Illinois. Learn more and apply.

Safe Zone Training

The Wackerlin Center is a safe space where resources are provided to support and strengthen alliances with AU's LGBTQ+ community members. AU’s Safe Zone Training Program is designed to provide resources to explore topics of gender and sexuality, increase awareness of the experiences of LGBTQ+ identities, and promote inclusive practices that foster a campus climate in which all are welcomed, included, and empowered to thrive. We offer two types of training:

  • Safe Zone 1.0 is a basic introduction to key issues, statistics, and vocabulary related to the experiences of the LGBTQ+ community.
  • Safe Zone 2.0 takes a deeper dive into the complexity of the information presented in 1.0 and offers interactive activities that will allow trainees to think more critically about issues as well as their roles in advocacy and/or allyship. Upon completing 2.0, participants will be recognized as official AU allies and presented with an AU Safe Zone sticker to post in their workspace. 
All students, faculty, and staff may participate in Safe Zone Trainings. To schedule a training, email aurorasafezone@aurora.edu.

Spiritual and Religious Pluralism

We recognize that faith, religion, and spirituality have a significant role in how our students understand the world and find their purpose. We are committed to making space for reflection, meditation, and prayer at the Wackerlin Center and the Chaplain's Office. If you would like to speak to a religious advisor of your faith tradition, please contact Justin West at juwest@aurora.edu.If you would like to inquire about Lowry Chapel, AU's campus chapel, or prayer rooms at the Wackerlin Center, please contact Mark Woolfington, university chaplain, at mwoolfington@aurora.edu.


For more information, contact Justin West, executive director of the Wackerlin Center for Faith and Action/chief diversity officer, at 630-844-5142 or juwest@aurora.edu.