A Focus on Place: A New Paradigm for Community Engagement in Higher Education
Erica Yamamura, Seattle University Kent Koth, Seattle University Karin Cotterman, University of San Francisco John Loggins, University of San Diego Jennifer Pigza, Saint Mary's College
Overview: We live in challenging and changing times. Major disruptions in our economic, social and political structures have led to questions about the purpose and meaning of many of our institutions including our colleges and universities. Perhaps more than ever universities and communities need each other to address the challenges we face. Unfortunately, our traditional approaches to community engagement in higher education, while having many strong merits, are not fully capable of responding to the enormity of the challenges we face.
The emerging model of place-based community engagement offers universities a powerful strategy to attain greater impact in their local communities and also on their campuses.
This interactive workshops will draw upon lessons learned from a new book Place-Based Community Engagement in Higher Education to present the benefits and challenges of this emerging approach to connecting campus and community. The session will include a discussion with several leaders of place-based efforts and a practical hands-on exploration of how an institution and its community might further pursue the place-based paradigm. The workshop will particularly explore how focusing on a geographic area shifts the balance of engagement towards an equal emphasis on campus and community impact and also invites a much deeper exploration of issues of power, privilege and race.