"The academy must become a more vigorous partner in the search for answers to our most pressing social, civic, economic and moral problems, and must reaffirm its historic commitment to what I call the scholarship of engagement."
-Ernest Boyer, 1996
NKU's commitment to public engagement
NKU has a strong commitment to public engagement and has an infrastructure in place to support the commitment. This infrastructure ( including key terms and definitions) was captured in a 2006 publication, "Laying the Foundation." Public engagement also is valued at NKU for reappointment, promotion and tenure. The faculty handbook provides more specificity about public engagement???s role in RPT.
Each semester, the Scripps Howard Center for Civic Engagement partners with faculty to support engaged learning at NKU. Our programming and support partnerships include:
These course are designed so that students gain "hands on" experience by taking what they've learned from the classroom and applying it. By teaching a service learning course, faculty witness how much material students have absorbed and offer a new perspective on the importance of helping the community. Learn more about service learning at the National Service-Learning Clearinghouse website
Partnering with Nonprofits
NKU faculty routinely partner with nonprofits in our region, often to create and develop service learning classes but also with other kinds of engagements such as faculty research, student research, internships, co-ops and mentoring opportunities. The Scripps Howard Center for Civic Engagement stands ready to assist NKU faculty in finding a community partner. Email us at email@example.com for more information on partnerships.
The center also maintains an inventory of opportunities for NKU to connect with community nonprofits. You can view the complete list online here.
Looking for opportunities to do research for nonprofits? Take a look at this research opportunity inventory, contact the organization and get started!
We also host a series of breakfasts that combine networking and a workshop for nonprofits in our region. For information about these (faculty are welcome to attend), contact Collette Thompson in our office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 572-7847.Newspaper Readership Program
The Center strives to encourage an informed community by distributing newspapers on campus. USA Today and the New York Times can be picked up in the lobby of most of the main buildings on campus including Steely Library and the Student Union. We also provide faculty access to the Associated Press news feed for classroom purposes. And our program includes Democracy Square Live (see more on our program links); DSL events are faculty-facilitated dialogues on current events and public policy. Want to host one? Contact us at email@example.com.
Kentucky Campus Compact
This organization keeps universities informed on events and encourages the departments of a university to come together and make a bigger difference in their communities. It's also involved in student voting during elections and collecting data on the poll results.
Kentucky Engagement Conference
This annual conference brings together faculty from around the state who have an interest in public engagement. The 2009 gathering marked the conference???s fourth year. It was hosted at NKU's METS Center on November 20 and focused on what educators can do to increase student???s civic learning, civic participation and civic skills. To view videos of the conference presentations, please access NKU's METS Center Webcast Portal. Login name: KEC/Password: kec09.The 2012 conference will be at Western Kentucky Univeristy. If you are interested in attending, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. NKU is a co-sponsor and will have some slots reserved for our faculty.
University-Community Partnership Grants
These grants are given "to full-time NKU faculty members who establish partnerships with local government agencies or nonprofit organizations and attempt to address the educational, health, social, or civic needs of the community." Learn more about these by visiting the UCPG site.
These courses allow faculty and students to evaluate a nonprofit and invest money into the nonprofit(s) of choice.
Northern Kentucky Forum
Several times a year, the Center and its co-sponsors, Vision 2015 and Legacy, host public forums on current events and public issues. The forums often dovetail with what's being taught in some classrooms, and so are ideally suited for recommended or required attendance by students. Also, ad hoc committees plan each forum and faculty are encouraged to participate; to do so, e-mail Center Director Mark Neikirk at email@example.com.
Everybody is welcome to do volunteer work. Bring your friends, family, and/or students and have fun making a positive impact on the community.
PUBLISHING public engagement research and case studies in academic journals
A number of peer-reviewed journals exist for publishing public engagement scholarship. Some journals to consider:
The Journal for Civic Commitment. This is a bi-annual, online, peer-reviewed journal dedicated to publishing the work of service-learning practitioners.
Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning. It too, is a peer-reviewed journal publishing articles written by faculty and service-learning educators on research, theory, pedagogy, and other issues related to academic (curriculum-based) service-learning in higher education.
Metropolitan Universities Journal: Higher education administrators and researchers often have to search in vain through many different sources for recent and relevant literature on hot topics such as curriculum reform, student retention, assessment, fund raising, faculty culture and governance, diversity, civic engagement, and many others. Metropolitan Universities is a quarterly journal that will help keep you up-to-date with cutting-edge higher education issues.
Journal of Higher Education Outreach & Engagement. Based at the University of Georgia, the journal seeks is a "peer-reviewed, interdisciplinary journal to advance the theory and practice ... (of) all forms of outreach and engagement between higher education institutions and communities."
PRISM: A Journal of Regional Engagement. This is a publication of Eastern Kentucky University, and publishes peer-reviewed research articles, case studies and applied research articles, accepting manuscripts related to the general theme of regional engagement.
eJournal of Public Affairs. This is a peer-reviewed, multidisciplinary, open-access electronic journal published by Missouri State University in partnership with the American Democracy Project.
Faculty can come to the Center and check out books to supplement their service learning experience. The Center is located in FH 536.
Stories of our success
DISCOVER, Northern Kentucky University's annual research magazine. Designed to portray the depth and breadth of research and scholarship at NKU, each edition includes articles about scholarship in the humanities, social sciences, professions and the sciences. Each of the research stories is unique, but taken together they show the university's commitment to creating cultural, scientific, social and economic benefits for the region.