SHINE: Education. Engagement. Partnership.

SHINE is Emory’s premier engagement program with the refugee, immigrant, and new American communities in metro Atlanta. Through educational events, celebrations, and sustained community collaboration, SHINE has contributed to a more welcoming and compassionate metro Atlanta for refugees, immigrants, and new Americans for over 15 years. Since its inception over 2,500 members of the Emory community participated in SHINE. We welcome students, staff, faculty, and alums to join us!

Our goal: Education. Engagement. Partnership.

Follow us on: Facebook |@emoryshine

Project SHINE

Ourgoal: Education. Engagement. Partnership.

10+ Community partners
40+ Trips each week


How To Sign Up

SHINE is open to all members of the Emory community including students, staff, faculty, and alumni. We work with awesome individuals who have a refugee and immigration background and who are often pursuing U.S. citizenship and aim to build a successful life as new Americans.

Each SHINE Semester is a 10-week commitment. We pair you with a local organization. You directly impact your community each week with 2-4 hours of your time. You pick the day of the week that works for you. Sign-up here!


We appreciate the great relationships with our community partners, many of which have collaborated with us for 10+ years. Follow the links here to get to know some of them and follow their amazing work.


Program roots

Project SHINE began in Philadelphia in the late-1980s and came into its own with a larger program launch at Temple University in 1997. Built on research that elders in the immigrant community were disproportionately affected by higher rates of social isolation, founders envisioned civic engagement and language education as an effective way to connect elders and support their agency. Thus, SHINE- Students Helping in the Naturalization of Elders was born.

Celebrating 15 years at Emory

The program grew to a point where it was able to provide seed grants to bring SHINE to colleges and universities around the country. In late 2003, Emory University, Georgia Perimeter College and the Clarkston Community Center applied for a Project SHINE seed grant here in Atlanta. In 2004, SHINE arrived on Emory’s campus.

Early on, the scope of Project SHINE broadened to engage all people in the refugee, immigrant, and new American communities, including kids K-12. In 2007, the acronym was updated to meet that expanded vision. It until 2019 it stood for Students Helping in Naturalization and English. Beginning in the fall of 2019 the program is simply known as “SHINE: Education. Engagement. Partnership.” Emory’s premier engagement program with the refugee, immigrant, and new American communities in metro-Atlanta. Since its inception in Atlanta, the program has established itself as a reliable partner in the community and a pivotal part in the Emory experience of more than 2,500 past participants.

Leaders, Staff, Student Workers

Byron Jones

Director, Student Led Community Engagement