For most people, universities and colleges are places of learning and knowledge building. Those century-old buildings of granite, brick, and marble arranged around emerald-green swaths of perfectly manicured fescue, are the places students go to sharpen their critical and strategic thinking, deepen their understanding for complex concepts, and develop the disciplinary skills that will serve them in their careers and lives long after they graduate.
But universities also exist in a social context—their campuses often located within cities or beside towns and residential communities. In many places, including Salt Lake, the campus overlaps or blends into the urban landscape and the university becomes a neighbor as well as a place of deep learning.
Many of the best colleges and universities recognize this important relationship, a kind of ecology between school and community—and work to maintain and protect the balance, even collaborating with the neighborhoods where they reside to effect changes that can be good for everyone. In some cases, instructors are even enlisting community partnerships to bolster the impact of curriculum, using Community Engaged Learning (a high-impact teaching practice) to inspire students and enrich their education.
During the next installment of the Friday Forum series, the University of Utah will explore the opportunities for amplifying community engagement through collaboration, consultation, and communication in order to understand and serve the needs of our community. National thought leaders will examine how universities can pursue meaningful outcomes that are focused on building relationships with sustainable results. And we’ll examine how administrators, teachers, researchers, and staff can devote attention and time to discovering the real needs of their communities by connecting with influencers, business leaders, and non-profit and religious organizations in order to achieve the Six Commitments outlined by University of Utah’s President Randall to serve the entire state of Utah.
Please join us as we discuss the importance of intentionally seeking out like-minded people who are committed to community and inclusive relationships that benefit us all. Please visit the Friday Forum: Amplifying Community Engagement event page to learn more about our esteemed panelists and register for the discussion.
Friday Forum: Amplifying Community Engagement
February 3 @ 1 – 2:30 p.m. MT
The University of Utah has the opportunity to strengthen each of the communities it touches by shaping and extending the power of partnership. In our Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion priority areas, we commit to “actively cultivate internal and external community connections where trust is built, the effects of injustice are uprooted, and long-term and sustainable outcomes and relationships are developed.” By drawing on all our resources—including research and innovation—we can boost community relationships and increase their capacity to do extraordinary things.