Understanding Engagement in Times of Crisis: A Partnership with AASCU’s American Democracy Project

Teaching community engagement in higher education

Collaboratory is thrilled to announce a new one-year initiative in partnership with AASCU’s American Democracy Project (ADP), Understanding Engagement in Times of Crisis.  

The past few months have created unprecedented challenges for our students, our institutions, and our democracy. This new landscape requires new strategies and approaches for our students to succeed and new ways of building campus-community partnerships. We need to better understand engagement in this new landscape and define the who, what, where, when and why of strategies, activities, and programming with and for our communities. During times of financial uncertainty and societal unrest, how do we leverage data about our campus-community partnerships to achieve common goals? How do we tell a robust story of engagement?

To support efforts to build this critical knowledge and understanding, ADP – a network of 276 public colleges and universities, serving 2.7 million students across 47 states nationwide – and Collaboratory are launching the Understanding Engagement in Times of Crisis initiative, offering institutions the unique opportunity to collaborate and deepen their understanding of community  engagement in a time of pandemic. Together, Collaboratory and ADP will provide the tools and resources for participating institutions to:

  • Build a community of practitioners to help define community engagement in the new landscape and share effective strategies and approaches
  • Use data to deepen work with community partners and identify the most effective community partnerships and models to address pressing issues in the community
  • Better tell their story qualitatively and quantitatively
  • Provide individual campus and aggregate evidence of how civic community engagement is operationalized against learning outcomes
  • Identify concrete engagement trends and patterns
  • Be prepared for accreditation and Carnegie applications
  • Have access to centralized engagement data and reports

The pilot initiative will begin in the Fall of 2020 and any AASCU ADP-member institution may apply to participate.

Want to Learn More?

Are you an AASCU institution interested in participating in this one-year pilot initiative to better document and understand engagement initiatives across your campus? 

Click here to view the full Call for Participation and Application instructions. Interested AASCU-member institutions should send a statement of interest to Felice Nudelman (nudelmanf@aascu.org) by 11:59 p.m. (Eastern) Thursday, September 17, 2020.