Academy of Community Engagement Scholarship (ACES)

María Nieves Tapia

Inducted in

CLAYSS, Latin American Center for Solidarity Service Learning (Argentina)

Founder and Director

Photo of María Nieves Tapia

Biographical Abstracts

Nieves Tapia is founder and director of the Latin American Center for Service-learning (CLAYSS) NGO based in Buenos Aires. From 1997 to 2010 she organized and directed the Argentina Ministry of Education's first national service-learning program. She was a founding board member of the International Association for Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement (IARSLCE). She co-founded the Iberian-American Service-learning Network in 2005 and has been part of its Steering Committee. She has offered hundreds of lectures, courses, and technical consultations in Latin America and around the world, including the University of California at Berkeley and the University of Minnesota (USA); the University of Barcelona and Complutense University in Spain; the National University of Malaysia; the International Exhibition and Conference on Higher Education in Saudi Arabia; the Service-learning Australia Summit; the Campus Engage Ireland Conference; and the Talloires Network Conference.

Tapia was honored as Argentina’s “Young Person of the Year” (1985) for her leadership in youth organizations during Argentina’s transition to democracy; has been an Eisenhower Fellow (1988) and National Service Fellow (1993); and has received the NYLC Alec Dickson Servant Leader Award (2001). She graduated in history in 1978 and was Ancient History Adjunct Professor at the Catholic University in Buenos Aires. She currently directs the Service-learning Higher Diploma (OEI-CUE-UNTREF-CLAYSS). Tapia has published numerous books and articles on service-learning in Spanish, English and Italian, among them “El compromiso social como pedagogía: Aprendizaje y solidaridad en la escuela” (2015); “Aprendizaje y servicio solidario en el sistema educativo y las organizaciones juveniles” (2006); and “La solidaridad como pedagogía” (2000).

Areas of Expertise

  • Service-learning
  • Youth engagement
  • Service-learning policies
  • Service-learning and Engagement institutional policies
  • Social justice perspective