CUMU and Collaboratory Partner to Launch Research Fellowship


Research fellow will leverage data to advance knowledge on campus-community partnerships

The Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities (CUMU), in partnership with Collaboratory, is pleased to announce a research fellowship opportunity utilizing a new dataset on community engagement and public service activities conducted by higher education institutions in and with their communities. The research fellow will leverage Collaboratory Data to advance knowledge around campus-community partnerships, with a focus on larger, more quantitative methodologies that challenge assumptions, clarify anecdotal evidence, and examine larger trends and patterns. This fellowship will open new possibilities for exploring campus-community partnerships on a national scale.

“Today, as higher education is being questioned, this new partnership with Collaboratory and the resulting insights will highlight how community engagement helps CUMU members achieve their place-based missions while creating transformative outcomes for students and communities served,” said Valerie Holton, executive director, CUMU.

Collaboratory’s dataset is the largest of its kind, representing descriptive data on over 5,000 community engagement and public service activities from 43 institutions across the United States. “We continue to invest in research and partnerships that enhance access to “bigger data” on engagement that can lead to more quantitative approaches.  Previous fellows have examined how to operationalize reciprocity through data, how to algorithmically quantify partnership strength, and how to align engagement with the UN Sustainable Development Goals, all of which have contributed significantly to advancing the scholarship and practice of engagement,” said Kristin Medlin, Director of Research and Development at Collaboratory.

The Fellow will receive an award of $5,000 to pursue the identified research question(s). This is a unique opportunity for researchers to have a platform to advance scholarship through a collaborative relationship with an industry leader and national association. The Fellow will conduct original research, then develop white papers and contribute to webinars to disseminate their findings. Proposals must be from a faculty member, staff, post-doc or graduate student from a CUMU member institution. Submissions from cross-institutional or cross-sectoral teams will be considered if the lead applicant is from a CUMU member institution.

Proposals must be submitted by November 15, 2022. The selected fellow will be announced by December 16, 2022. Final submission of the research brief must be published by August 31, 2022. CUMU members interested in learning more about the research fellowship should direct all questions to CUMU Executive Director Valerie Holton at [email protected].

About Collaboratory:

Collaboratory is a one-of-a-kind software that helps higher education understand the landscape of their engagement—the who, what, where, when and why of activities designed with and for their communities. Institutions committed to community engagement are challenged to track essential aspects of activities and partnerships for the purpose of planning, reporting, and accreditation/classifications, as well as to build best practice and impactful outcomes. In Collaboratory, the specific details of campus-community activities are connected to a network of affiliated community partners, units on campus, courses, and institutional programs and initiatives. The resulting data enables administrators and scholars to develop institutional identity around community engagement, increase buy-in and understanding for community engagement and public service from internal and external stakeholders, advocate for its recognition in faculty rewards and institutional plans and policies, and demonstrate the value and impacts of their partnerships.

About CUMU:

The Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities (CUMU) is the longest-running and largest organization committed to serving and connecting urban and metropolitan universities. CUMU focuses on strengthening institutions that are developing new responses to the pressing educational, economic, and social issues of the day. CUMU was formed in 1989 by leaders of metropolitan and urban institutions who realized their unique challenges and opportunities as they looked to the future of higher education. Today, CUMU is dedicated to its member institutions and to the creation and dissemination of knowledge on the issues that face our urban and metropolitan campuses and the communities we serve.

Want to Learn More About Collaboratory?

If your institution is interested to learn more about how to leverage Collaboratory to tell your story of engagement, email info@cecollaboratory.

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