The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG) is a public university founded in 1891 in Greensboro, North Carolina with the one word motto, “service.” In 2008, UNCG became one of 119 American universities and colleges recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advance of Teaching’s Community Engagement Classification in two categories: curricular engagement and outreach and partnership. Community engagement is a key strategy to achieving the core teaching, research, and service missions of UNCG. In recognition of the importance of, as well as challenges associated with enacting truly reciprocal partnerships for mutual benefit, there are multiple and mutually reinforcing supports across campus to foster continued dialogue and growth:
The Institute for Community & Economic Engagement
Mission: ICEE encourages, supports, elevates, and amplifies faculty, staff, student, and community colleagues from across all sectors who are involved in teaching, learning, research, creative activity, and service in ways that promote strategic goals of the university and address pressing issues which have important implications to communities across the Piedmont Triad, state, nation, and world.
The Office of Leadership & Service-Learning
The Office of Leadership and Service-Learning (OLSL) at The University of North Carolina at Greensboro serves as a catalyst for the development of experiential curricular and co-curricular leadership and service-learning initiatives. Through civic engagement, community partner collaboration, and personal reflection, we prepare students for a life of active citizenship. OLSL assists students in developing a personal philosophy of leadership while gaining valuable and diverse experiences, empowering them to effect positive change and serve as citizen-leaders in a global community.
The Community Engagement Collaboratory
The Collaboratory is a database of community-engaged projects and partnerships that take place between UNCG and partners from our community. This collection of projects and participants showcases collaborations between the community and their UNCG partners by telling the story of mutually beneficial and sustainable relationships through scholarship, teaching, research, creative activities, service, and more. The Collaboratory has identified more than 150 community-university projects conducted by over 200 UNCG faculty/staff and 100 UNCG students in collaboration with 271 community organizations and over $41.7 million dollars in funding for community-engaged work.
Community Engagement in the School of Health & Human Sciences
The School of Health and Human Sciences has been chosen to “beta test” engaged scholarship for UNCG. Through our efforts, we will provide a model for UNCG on how to both measure and promote community engagement – this work will position UNCG to be a system-wide leader in this important area. Disciplines within HHS, by their very nature, address the needs of individuals, families, and communities from diverse cultures across the entire lifespan. The Departments and programs have a great mix of scholars known for their knowledge and contributions to communities across the state and beyond. Together, HHS has a total of 854 community affiliations either by faculty engagement and service in communities, or by students’ service, internships, or clinical placements
Interdisciplinary Research Networks & Centers
Several campus-wide research networks have been established to foster interdisciplinary research and scholarly activities at UNCG. Composed of faculty members and researchers from the UNCG community whose scholarship and teaching reflect a core theme, these networks capitalize on and leverage UNCG’s strengths by coordinating and facilitating collaborations and enhancing research, scholarship and teaching. Many of these networks highlight and foster community-engaged research and community participation (e.g., the Center for New North Carolinian’s Research Fellows Program)
UNCG is also an institutional member of other local, national, and international networks/associations focused on community engagement:
- Campus-Community Partnerships for Health (CCPH): CCPH is a nonprofit organization that promotes health through partnerships between communities and academic institutions. By mobilizing knowledge, providing training and technical assistance, conducting research, building coalitions and advocating for supportive policies, CCPH helps to ensure that the reality of community engagement and partnership matches the rhetoric. UNCG members have access to funding opportunities, publication discounts, conferences/training institutes, member interest groups, and listservs.
- Guilford Nonprofit Consortium: The Guilford Nonprofit Consortium is a collaborative of nonprofit organizations in Guilford County, North Carolina, that fosters mutual assistance and support within the nonprofit community to create a more efficient and effective nonprofit sector. As a member of the consortium, UNCG shares with and learns from community colleagues through educational programs, leadership training, technical support, volunteers, and networking.
- Imagining America’s National Consortium: UNCG has joined Imagining America, a national consortium of universities and organizations dedicated to advancing the public and civic purposes of humanities, arts, and design. As part of the consortium, UNCG members have access to many translocal collaboration opportunities, grants, and arts engagements that Imagining America sponsors, and are encouraged to attend the annual conference. Contact campus liaisonsPatrick Lee Lucas or Emily Janke for more information.
- North Carolina Campus Compact: North Carolina Campus Compact (NCCC) builds the capacity of colleges and universities to produce civically-engaged graduates and strengthen communities. NCCC encourages presidential leadership around community engagement; supports civic engagement administrators, promotes engaging students and faculty in volunteerism, service-learning, community-based research, philanthropy, social entrepreneurship, and other innovative approaches that address local, national and global needs; convenes members providing opportunities for member growth and development and building partnerships; integrates new technologies and social media to further collaboration and civic engagement; advances knowledge and research on trends in engagement, best practices, and pedagogies; promotes global understanding through local and global service; and partners with other organizations and entities with similar goals and projects, valuing the unique contributions of each participant.
- AASCU’s American Democracy Project: The American Democracy Project (ADP) is a multi-campus initiative focused on higher education’s role in preparing the next generation of informed, engaged citizens for our democracy. The project began in 2003 as an initiative of the American Association of State Colleges and Universities (AASCU), in partnership with The New York Times.
- Lead institution in NASPA’s Lead Initiative: As a participating institution in NASPA’s initiative, UNCG will continue to develop partnerships to increase each student’s commitment to being engaged and active citizens, serving their communities and undertaking leadership roles both on and off campus.