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Community and Service

This strategic goal area defines how higher education must provide students with the knowledge and commitment to be socially responsible citizens in a diverse democracy and increasingly interconnected world. Colleges and universities have important civic responsibilities to their communities, their nation, and the larger world. Engagement with others in the context of real-life community challenges encourages self-knowledge, a deepened understanding of place and context, and increased intellectual development.
  • Promoting Research through sponsoring scholars whose research is applied to community needs and/or focused on ways to measure civic engagement and social capital.
  • Linking Campuses to communities to advance reciprocal understanding, productive partnerships, and collective civic action.
  • Providing and Supporting Leadership to cultivate a new generation of faculty and graduates who are committed to democracy, diversity, and social responsibility.
  • Providing Training and Knowledge sharing to expand and deepen commitment to civic engagement in disciplines and departments, and develop interdisciplinary inquiry, active learning, and research.
  • Creating Venues for Dialogue to share best practices and learn across differences.
  • Establishing Standards for Assessment to measure the impact on students and on community partners of civic engagement activities.
  • Connecting Scholarship to campus practices to improve the outcomes of civic engagement initiatives and enhance connections between curricular and co-curricular experiences.

Possible Indicators and Strategies

  • Mission and purpose
  • Administrative and academic leadership
  • External resource allocation
  • Disciplines, departments, and interdisciplinary work
  • Faculty roles and rewards
  • Internal resource allocation
  • Community voice enabling mechanisms
  • Faculty development
  • Integrated and complementary community service activities
  • Forums for fostering public dialogue
  • Student voice

 Adapted from Hollander, Saltmarsh, & Zlotkowski.
"Indicators of Engagement," in Simon, Kenny, Brabeck, & Lerner, eds. Learning to Serve:
Promoting Civil Society Through Service-Learning. Norwell, MA: Kluwer Academic Publishers, 2002.