Engaging U Newsletter - 1/22/13

Engagement Profile

photo of work-zone speed limit sign of 25 mph

For this edition of our Engaging U spotlight we meet Laurie McGinnis, Director of the Center for Transportation Studies (CTS). In the interview below, McGinnis provides highlights of her center's engagement work on a project of regional significance.

1) Describe the work of your office.

The Center for Transportation Studies (CTS) was created in 1987 to address the need for closer cooperation between University faculty and state and federal departments of transportation, and to strengthen the University's role in transportation research and education. Our mission is to be a catalyst for transportation innovation through research, education, and outreach.

CTS uses a broad participatory structure to engage practitioners, stakeholders, policymakers, private industry, and communities with University faculty, staff, and students on the transportation issues of today and tomorrow. Our partners view us as an objective convener around transportation topics with the ability to facilitate discussions that lead to solutions.

2) What is a current engagement project your unit is working on?

Ed Goetz, director of the Center for Urban and Regional Affairs, and I are co-leading the University of Minnesota's evaluation team as part of the metropolitan area's "Corridors of Opportunity" initiative (www.corridorsofopportunity.org). It is an initiative to promote sustainable, vibrant, and healthy communities in the Minneapolis-St. Paul region, using the region's emerging transitway system as a development focus. Funded by a Sustainable Communities Regional Planning Grant from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) and Integration Initiative funds from Living Cities (a collaboration of 22 of the nation's largest foundations and financial institutions) the Corridors of Opportunity initiative runs from 2011 to 2013.

The evaluation will address both the systems-change dimensions of the Corridors of Opportunity initiative as well as the tangible impacts on quantitative indicators documenting changes in the region.

The objectives are to:

  • Evaluate the impact of the Corridors of Opportunity initiative;
  • Provide data or outcome reporting required by HUD;
  • Coordinate data, data collection, measures and indicators of activity related to Corridors of Opportunity and its projects, leveraging other data collection efforts; and
  • Provide the Corridors of Opportunity Policy Board ongoing formative evaluation to inform the evolution of the Corridors of Opportunity initiative.

3) What impact is this project having/expect to have?

The vision of the initiative is that transit way corridors will guide our region's growth, vitality and competitiveness. Development along transit ways will create distinctive places and strengthen local assets while increasing ridership and expanding access to jobs, affordable housing and essential services for residents of all incomes and backgrounds.

Updates and Announcements

UMN Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Service Pledge Drive

banner for U of M Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Service Pleadge Drive

A "day on, not a day off." That's the spark for the UMN Martin Luther King, Jr. Community Service Volunteer Pledge Drive. Inspired by the national MLK Day of Service, this pilot project on the Twin Cities campus aims to promote service opportunities for faculty, staff, and students while advancing the University's mission of public engagement for the common good.

Through a voluntary "Take the Pledge" web page, the project will also provide a snapshot of the community volunteer hours U faculty, staff, and students contribute each year.

Pledge any amount of volunteer community service hours through March 31 and complete pledged hours by Friday, May 17.

Sponsored by: Office for Public Engagement, Public Engagement Council, Office for Equity and Diversity, & University Senate Committee on Equity, Diversity, and Access

Applications being accepted for Fesler-Lampert Chair in Urban & Regional Affairs

The Center for Urban and Regional Affairs is pleased to announce the competition for the 2013-2014 Fesler-Lampert Chair in Urban and Regional Affairs. The center is inviting interested faculty across the University of Minnesota to apply for this award. Established in 1999, the Fesler-Lampert Chair was created to recognize faculty members with a distinguished record of research or teaching related to urban and regional affairs who will use the resources they receive to undertake research or scholarly activities on behalf of the University. The endowment will generate $40,000 to support the research activities of this faculty member for one year. Application materials are due by February 11, 2013 at 4:30 p.m.

Center for Urban and Regional Affairs New Report: Impacts of CURA Projects 2009-2010

After contacting more than 100 people involved in Center for Urban and Regional Affairs-sponsored projects during the 2009-2010 academic year, CURA is proud to present its impacts report that shows the reach of its efforts within the community. The body of the report shows community and student answers to specific questions accompanied by quotes that demonstrate the impact of each project. The conclusion of the report summarizes the eight exemplary projects and their overall outcomes. To see the full report, visit CURA's website.

Upcoming Events

Featured Resource

banner of Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research

The Undergraduate Journal of Service Learning and Community-Based Research is a refereed, multidisciplinary online undergraduate journal publishing intellectual and reflective work on service learning and community-based research. It is open to undergraduate students in the United States and across the globe. Two Minnesota students are among the authors in the recently published first volume. Skyler Larrimore graduated from Macalester College in 2012 with a BA in Sociology and Geography and Joe Praska graduated from the University of Minnesota with a BA in Sociology and a Minor in Urban Studies.

Funding and Awards

  • Interdisciplinary Center for the Study of Global Change: Mellon Scholar Fellowship (Deadline: January 25)
    ICGC-Mellon Scholar Fellowships support graduate students whose research interests emphasize humanistic and interpretive social science perspectives. Nominees are expected to conduct at least a portion of their dissertation research in Southern Africa.

  • Center for Transportation Studies Research Partnership Award (Deadline: January 25, 2013)
    This award recognizes research projects within the Center for Transportation Studies program that have resulted in significant impacts on transportation, and rewards teams of individuals who have drawn on the strengths of diverse populations to achieve those results.

  • J.W. McConnell Family Foundation: Community Service Learning Awards (Deadline: January 31)
    This program recognized successful community initiatives supported by robust community service-learning programs with awards of up to $7500. Awardees will also be celebrated in a video and at a national event.

  • CURA Dissertation Research Grant (Deadline: March 1, 2013)
    This program provides one year of support ($20,000) to a doctoral candidate in good academic standing at the University of Minnesota for the purpose of completing dissertation research on a significant issue or topic related to urban areas in the upper Midwest.

  • CCPH Annual Award (Deadline: March 4, 2013)
    The CCPH Annual Award was established in 2002 to highlight the power and potential of community-campus partnerships as a strategy for health equity and social justice. Each year, it recognizes exemplary partnerships between communities and academic institutionsthat are striving to achieve the systems and policy changes needed to overcome the root causes of health, social, environmental and economic inequalities.

  • 2013 Ernest A. Lynton Award for the Scholarship of Engagement for Early Career Faculty (Deadline: April 26, 2013 at 5 pm)
    This annual award recognizes a faculty member who connects his or her teaching, research, and service to community engagement. The Lynton Award is designated as an award for early career faculty. The award will be presented at the 19th Annual Conference of the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities at the University of Louisville in Louisville, Kentucky.

Call for Proposals and Papers

  • Call for Proposals: A Journal of Imagining America (Deadline: January 15 - February 15, 2013)
    The theme of this new journal is "Linked Fates & Futures: Communities and Campuses as Equitable Partners". We invite proposals that reflect critically on the shared predicaments of democratically-oriented cultural work in higher education.

  • Call for Manuscripts - Journal of Public Scholarship in Higher Education (Deadline: February 1, 2013)
    The Journal of Public Scholarship in Higher Education showcases the new disciplinary knowledge and pedagogical practice generated when faculty engage with communities. The journal promotes community-engaged teaching, research, and service as forms of public scholarship.

  • Call for Abstracts: National Environmental Justice Conference & Training Program (Deadline: February 1, 2013)
    Leaders from various sectors will engage in three days of free exchange of new ideas and new approaches to environmental justice.

  • Call for Proposals-Community College National Center for Community Engagement Annual Conference (Deadline: February 8, 2013)
    The Community College National Center for Community Engagement is happy to announce it is now accepting pre-conference and workshop proposals for its 22nd Annual International Conference to be held on May 22-24, 2013

  • 2013 Upper Midwest Civic Engagement Summit: Call for Session Proposals (Deadline: February 11, 2013)
    Iowa, Minnesota and Wisconsin Campus Compact invite proposals for the Upper Midwest Civic Engagement Summit, which will take place May 29-30, 2013 at Loras College in Dubuque, Iowa. Each session proposal should relate to the Summit's theme: Weaving Deep Connections Across Institutions and Communities.

  • Faculty Interactive Research Program Call for Proposals (Deadline: February 11, 2013)
    The Center for Urban and Regional Affairs (CURA) invites proposals for its Faculty Interactive Research Program. The purpose of this program is to encourage University faculty members to carry out research projects that involve a significant urban-related public policy issue for the state or its communities, and that include active engagement with groups, agencies, or organizations in Minnesota involved with the issue.

  • Call for Papers: Teaching Democratic Thinking (Deadline: February 15, 2013)
    Proposal abstracts are sought for a special 2014 issue of Partnerships: A Journal of Service-learning and Civic Engagement. Partnerships is a multidisciplinary, peer-reviewed journal exploring effective partnerships between students, faculty community agencies, and administrators in higher education.

  • Call for Manuscript Proposals: Special Issue of Feminist Teacher on Feminist Campus-Community Partnerships (Deadline: February 15, 2013)
    This special issue of Feminist Teacher wants to examine this tension in the hope of sharing tactics and strategies that can open up new possibilities for students, faculty, administrators, and community partners. To this end, we seek contributions that provide project-specific attempts to connect with—or interrupt—community engagement work as a way to generate meaning in the lives of students, faculty, administrators and community partners.

  • RIEJS Call for Papers: Education for Citizenship: Challenges and Perspectives from a Social Justice Approach (Deadline: February 15, 2013)
    The International Journal of Education for Social Justice (RIEJS) publishes three types of contributions: articles, text reviews, and published-contribution reviews.

  • Imagine America Call for Proposals: Communities & Campuses as Equitable Partners (Deadline: February 15, 2013)
    Imagine America invites submissions to the first issue of Public rooted in the 2012 Imagining America conference. The e-journal of Imagining America: Artists and Scholars in Public Life, Public promotes public and engaged forms of scholarship and practice across arts, humanities, and design.

  • The California Series of Public Anthropology International Competition (Deadline: March 1, 2013)
    Proposals are being sought for short books oriented toward undergraduates that focus on how social scientists are facilitating social change. The California Series of Public Anthropology is looking for accessible, grounded accounts that present compelling stories that inspire others.

  • 4th Asia Regional Pacific Regional Conference on Service-Learning in Hong Kong, China (Deadline: January 31)
    This conference provides a platform to connect knowledge from different academic disciplines and different social sectors, to learn from each others' best practices and to apply knowledge in different settings to achieve a better world. Topics include: different modes/models of service-learning; building effective partnerships in service-learning; service-learning as civic education; global citizenship and international service-learning; program evaluation and assessment; fostering reflection/critical thinking; and higher education as a force to address social problems.

  • Upper Midwest Civic Engagement Summit: Call for Proposals (Deadline: February 11)
    This summit will provide opportunities for faculty, professional staff, student and community leaders interested in higher education civic engagement activities to network and learn from one another while engaging in skill-building sessions as well as discussing important issues facing our communities and campuses.

  • 2013 Next Steps Conference: Call for Proposals (Deadline: February 11)
    Engagement Australia invites proposals for the 2013 Next Steps Conference. Potential presenters are asked to clearly indicate their chosen conference theme and presentation format. All proposals will be made online via a secure portal that you can edit and manage before the conference.

  • Resilient Communities Project 2013-2014: Request for Proposals (Deadline: February 15)
    The Resilient Communities Project is accepting proposals from cities and counties to be the community partner for 2013-2014. RCP serves communities addressing sustainability at the local or regional scale.

  • Center for Public Anthropology International Competition 2013 (Deadline: March 1)
    The California Series in Public Anthropology is continuing its International Competition in 2013. It seeks proposals for short books orientated towards undergraduates that focus on how social scientists are facilitating social change.

  • Call for Manuscripts: NOSC2012 Special Issue of the Journal of Community Engagement & Scholarship (Deadline: March 1, 2013)
    The Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship (JCES) invites presenters and others to submit manuscripts related to the NOSC 2012 general theme PARTNER. INSPIRE. CHANGE. and any of these three tracks: Voice of the Student/Young Scholar, Voice of the Community-Partner Scholar, and Voice of the Senior Engaged Scholar.


  • The University of Minnesota Extension is recruiting candidates for five Extension Educator positions in Youth Development. Educator positions are regionally focused with one position available at each of the following locations: Crookston, Farmington, Marshall, Moorhead and the Urban office on St. Paul Campus. Search for the job postings on the University of Minnesota's Human Resources website using these codes: 181844, 181828, 181836, 181843.

  • The Center for Early Education and Development (CEED) is offering a variety of online courses for continuing education. Continuing education certificates awarded for successful completion of a course are approved and issued by the College. Visit the CEED website for the full list and details about the courses.

If you have items you would like included in Engaging U, please send them to Amber Cameron (acameron@umn.edu)