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SU selected by Carnegie Foundation for new Community Engagement Classification
SU selected by Carnegie Foundation for new Community Engagement ClassificationJanuary 19, 2007Jaime Winne Alvarezjlwinne@syr.edu
Syracuse University has been selected as one of 76 colleges and universities nationwide recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching for a new Community Engagement Classification. SU was cited for its “curricular engagement and outreach and partnerships.”
Unlike other Carnegie classifications that rely on national data, the new classification is “elective” — institutions elected to participate by submitting documentation describing the nature and extent of their engagement with the community, which included descriptions and examples of institutionalized practices of community engagement that show alignment among mission, culture, leadership, resources and practices. The classification represents a significant affirmation of the importance of community engagement in higher education.
“The Carnegie Foundation’s creation of this classification is a strong signal about the direction in which colleges and universities in our society must evolve,” says Chancellor and President Nancy Cantor. “SU’s having earned this distinction affirms our institutional vision of Scholarship in Action and recognizes our success in pursuing it.”
Institutions that submitted applications were classified in one of three categories:
- Curricular Engagement: teaching, learning and scholarship that engage faculty, students and community in mutually beneficial and respectful collaboration. Interactions address community-identified needs, deepen students’ civic and academic learning, enhance community well-being and enrich the scholarship of the institution. (Five institutions were selected.)
- Outreach and Partnerships: two different but related approaches to community engagement. The first focuses on the application and provision of institutional resources for community use with benefits to both campus and community. The latter focuses on collaborative interactions with community and related scholarship for the mutually beneficial exchange, exploration and application of knowledge, information and resources (research, capacity building, economic development, etc.). (Nine were institutions selected.)
- Curricular Engagement and Outreach and Partnerships: institutions with substantial commitments in both areas described above. (Sixty-two institutions were selected.)
Recently, SU has embarked on a new chapter in its longstanding tradition of community engagement, outreach and partnerships through Scholarship in Action, an educational approach matching the vigorous pursuit of knowledge with the ability to make a difference in the world through engagement. This is the centerpiece of the University’s institutional vision. SU’s forward momentum is fueled by this vision of a university where faculty and students explore new spheres of discovery in a rigorous academic environment that is actively involved and partnered with the community.
SU’s Carnegie application detailed numerous examples of Scholarship in Action, including service learning and volunteer programs; student immersion experiences on theater row or Wall Street; University partnerships with non-governmental organizations abroad and not-for-profits in the city of Syracuse; internship programs; service requirements for sororities and fraternities; the hundreds of initiatives sponsored by academic, administrative, and student programs across campus; and the creation of the Mary Ann Shaw Center for Public and Community Service (CPCS).
“Finding new and better ways to connect with their communities should be a high priority for higher education institutions today,” says Lee S. Shulman, president of the Carnegie Foundation. “The campuses participating in this elective classification provide useful models of engagement around teaching and learning and around research agendas that benefit from collaborative relationships.”
The new Community Engagement Classification was developed as part of an extensive overhaul of the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education and represents a second phase of work that began last year. Last November, Carnegie released five new classification schemes and in February released a revised version of the basic classification (the traditional framework first developed in 1970). The foundation has created online tools that allow institutions and researchers to examine institutional classifications and generate custom listings.
The Carnegie Foundation, through the work of the Carnegie Commission on Higher Education, developed the first typology of American colleges and universities in 1970 as a research tool to describe and represent the diversity of U.S. higher education. The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education continues to be used for a wide range of purposes by academic researchers, institutional personnel, policymakers and others.
To see the full list of institutions selected in the Curricular Engagement; Outreach and Partnerships; and Curricular Engagement and Outreach and Partnerships categories, visit http://www.carnegiefoundation.org/.