Engaging Minds, Transforming Lives

Civic Engagement

About Us

70% of Southwestern’s student population participates in some form of civic engagement.During the 2012-2013 academic year, 974 students spent nearly 40,000 hours performing co-curricular outreach as volunteers and activists.Our staff helps facilitate these opportunities.


Dr. Brackmann
Sarah Brackmann directs the Office of Civic Engagement at Southwestern University. Dr. Brackmann completed her Ph.D. in Higher Education from the University of Georgia, where her research focused on the impact of decreased public funding on community engagement programs. She earned a Masters of Arts in Higher Education and Student Affairs with a concentration in service-learning from The Ohio State University, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Xavier University (OH).





pufferSarah Puffer is the Coordinator of Civic Engagement at Southwestern University. Puffer graduated from Southwestern in 2014 as as International Studies and Environmental Studies double major. While at Southwestern, Puffer studied abroad in Ecuador where she researched the Ecuadorian rose trade. As a student, Puffer was heavily involved with the Community Garden, Boys and Girls Club and the cross country team. Most recently, she completed an internship with the City of Austin’s Zero-Waste Team. Puffer is passionate about incorporating thoughtful civic engagement and experiential learning opportunities in co-curricular organizations.



Kathryn Reagan is a junior at Southwestern University. She is a computer science major, math minor and unofficially majoring in all things civic engagement. She has been a student worker for the OCE for two years and is in her second year of chairing Sustain, the organization which hosts The BIG Event! She is also a service vice president in Alpha Phi Omega and a member of Southwestern’s Computer Science Club as well as the Honor Code Council. Reagan is passionate about women in technology (like Ada Lovelace and Grace Hopper) and empowering individuals to get involved with their community. In particular, she is very connected to and fond of the Georgetown community.


Cody Hebert is currently a junior at Southwestern University majoring in Communication Studies. During the spring semester of 2015, he is conducting a communications internship with the OCE. Hebert is involved on campus with the NCAA Mens Golf team, Students for Sustained Civic Engagement, and the Student Athletic Advisory Committee. At Southwestern, he participated in a First Year Seminar which focused on Philanthropy. The seminar helped Hebert in his understanding of community organizations, like non-profits, and how they are intertwined and related with members of a community.