Advice for how civic engagement will work comes from a dean or other person of higher authority.
-Retreats.. get people away from their usual environments.
-Civic Engagement (CE) Training
-Makes sense to bring campuses together
-Problem: Hard to get people to go on retreats
-Alternative: On-Campus training like Service Learning 101
-Individual departments have a CE retreat
-It makes a huge difference on how we discuss CE
-There are ways to address the problem of low turn out for trainings
-Usually faculty get merit by research, but is there a way to connect this research with CE?
At UMD, it is hard to convince new faculty to get involved in CE.
Long, steady work up to 10-20 years for CE to be prominent and work well.
What are the action steps?
-How does change occur?
-Education to faculty
Get people to understand CE
-Have students shadow a mentor
-Faculty could have a CE mentor to see how it works.
Funding is an issue
-Sciences vs. Humanities and Arts
-Arts and Sciences should work together
-We need to seek out all of our resources for funds so that if someone wants to do a project, they will know where to go for ideas on funding.
UMD is more individual than collectivist. Need support from dept. head and the dept. as a whole.
Make change and innovation less threatening
2. Market- spread knowledge
3. Take acton and have office be available to faculty who need help. Be more assertive.
Youtube video on CE as well as handbook for people who don't want electronic version.
Need to develop a plan or model for faculty to follow.
IDS and OCE come together for SL 101 Workshop.
Increase student retention
Service Learning credit? 3 credit vs. 4 credit?
Future Book Groups
-Are we satisfying our purpose?
-As long as we recruit at least 1 or 2 new faculty, it is worth it.
-Bring in big names to present at book groups?
-Small group retreat?
Civic Engagement in a recession: How can we utilize Civic Engagement and Service-Learning at the University?
What should we do?
Get out of the “tell ‘em” mode (teachers to students)
- IDS has been working on this for years
- Civic Engagement has false political connections
- Emphasis on community learning
Instructors or tenured professors are much more likely to participate in service-learning, otherwise it is publish or parish for tenure-track faculty
Flaw in the incentive structure – where do our values lie?
• UMD is a land-grant institute with a commitment to improve the community
• With many in administration, values not in teaching students but promoting research, not teaching
Movement towards a scholarship of engagement
• re-word language
• Issue: “I don’t know how to asses this?” No structure in merit language to assess
• don’t know how this will grow…an individual thing… need to have more conversations
• Currently, let the critical mass grow
Lessons on p. 187 great, learn from these examples to implement at UMD
Need the Chair of the Dept. on the side advocating for civic engagement, without them it is very difficult…back to the individual
Two Tracks towards tenure
2. Teaching (scholarship of teaching)
Best interest of students and researchers
• Current structure creates a hierarchy, with researchers on top and teachers on the bottom
• Often track this all the way back to the hiring process
• Something to be said about honesty (in the hiring process)
Take time for this to go away
• creates a more critical mass of professors for whom teaching is important
Students changed dramatically in the past few decades
• Was top 5% of SAT, now a prerequisite for white collar work
• Many students now not into the same ways universities have taught in the past (how to create a better learning environment for all types of students)
Technology – Online Engagement
Google Docs provide an opportunity
How help organizations online with volunteers?
Online discussion, don’t know who you’re talking to
• Blog is the new forum
• not always appropriate, can’t get ideas out fully in 3 paragraphs
How to feel community online
• -something gained, something lost
Create community online
• Example: a rare cancer group, all members have a rare, shared experience
Responsibility to the listener
• qualify what you say
• Online discussion takes away verbal and non-verbal cues
Content and Medium
• False idea that it doesn’t matter (how you communicate) or which medium you use
• Communication medium not interchangeable without loosing something
Technology is a tool; some things work well, some things poorly
Lot of effort to do well, people for whom online works very well
• People who gravitate to classes, maybe least equipped to succeed
• Convenience and money, busy lifestyles
• Feeds into desire to cut budget
• No sense of urgency on this campus
• Real social issues that need to be dealt with
• Civic engagement a way to save but don’t feel the drive
Wild wild west – technology
• Finding out how to live with the communication network
• Threatens community, now go to your channel and tells you what you want to hear
• more distant from others who don’t share ideas
Communities can be good or bad
• Gang talk, now groups of young men together become bad
• Street gangs provide something that is needed, instead of policy against, policy to take away the bad aspects
Students need to focus on life needs, just starting on their lives
“It’s all about me”
• Huge gap between actualization and students
• Connect survival to engagement, how they will live and their community
How to structure it?
1. Student assessment
2. Institution needs historically minded
3. End of the year, history and reflect on growth
4. Potential in interdisciplinary, continually run into barriers
• Should be actively working to pollinate across boundaries, disciplines
• Benefits, look at the problem with different eyes
• Answer lies amongst several disciplines
Barriers in administration, employee pockets
Action Lists (see uploads)
An Idea List: Lessons - The Importance of Strategically Mobilizing Scarce Resources for Change Pg 187/188
A To-Do List: Pg 199/200
For Next Time:
Action plan for next meeting! Modest goals to get people thinking.
Below are some links to interesting information regarding civic engagement and social networking sites.
Civic Engagement, Service Learning and UMD Blog site:
Minnesota Daily Student Newspaper on Facebook:
Social Networks Research and Creative Collaborative:
This information came from this broadcast on MPR:
CSRfeed: theCSRfeed™, powered by 3BL Media provides the most comprehensive Corporate Social Responsibility, Sustainability and Cause Marketing news and information you want and need. When and where you want it - all at no charge.
The meeting began with a discussion of how useful really are the book group meetings.
How to make the groups more successful:
• Need the support of a group of tenured faculty
• This will work when faculty are working in the community with their students
A new way to structure courses?
1. Basic Academic (reading and classroom)
2. Civic Engagement (in the community)
Need to sell Civic Engagement
• What does this do for students and the college?
• Offer the evidence
• Create active learning credits
• An additional resource for schools (a lot of focus on area schools already, student teachers through the education dept.)
• New and Creative ways to use student teachers
• What is it about the experience of civic engagement which makes students more aware of their community?
• How do we define for all students, despite people having different political and social understandings?
Civic Engagement requires:
Imagination: once the doors are open…see through and say “I could do that.”
“If you’re willing to think outside the box, you can do anything.”
See the world differently and a willingness to fail
The world is not like an academic institution’s hierarchy; it is much messier.
• Academic Environment = isolation
• Space and time to question, rather than always having to make a decision immediately
Community will begin to see the university as a partner
Engaged – space for self inspection and to ponder
• Which departments function better in isolation?
• The willingness to become civically engaged happens as a department
• How does an institution help/make departments consider becoming engaged departments? What incentives?
• Instead of just, “A Great University on a Great Lake” to include touching the community and the world
Bowling Alone Survey, bridging social capital, class and geography (see results on blog and in links below).
How to integrate students and the community
• Science Night example - Bring people on campus as a means of civic engagement
• Have information about topic available at a play, information out to the audience on subject matter (deeper engagement)
Reinforce a subject through another (Bill Payne uses this method)
Literature through Theatre
• Purpose of live performance
• Broad understanding
• Performance for all, simple engagement
• Reflective journals on the performances
What is happening in the Business School?
• Programs to work with taxes, students are there to consult
• Measured impact of this program on the students and on the community? Do these students have a higher opinion of these courses?
• Still within an academic context
P. 31 – the marriage of education and democracy
• Accounting: Role of accounting in the budgeting process
• How the government adds up money, what it means, how it touches them (the students)
• The process will teach them about government
Accounting, Organizations and Society (broad view, non-traditional)
Is civic engagement propaganda? For what and for whom
Public Art – different than what you see in a museum
Mural as a mode of political engagement
How to include politics in a fair way
Everything in the public eye is up to personal perception (In the eye of the beholder)
Task for next Meeting: Come up with five good things and five bad which are applicable to our community and civic engagement.
Minnesota Campus Compact
Civic Engagement and Campus/Community Partnerships
Duluth Superior Area Community Foundation
Social Capital Benchmark Survey
What is Civic Engagement? Is a definition necessary for people to grasp the idea? Need everyone to understand what civic engagement is, and what service learning is, and how these terms are interconnected.
Where do we start? We need to determine common goals and common values. We need to rediscover what we share as common goals.
We need to make sure the community understands what it means to host a student who is participating in service learning. The sites might say “We don’t want your help, unless it is good help,” like with the university near Philadelphia discussed in Chapter 4. There is a misunderstanding that the university knows (knows all and has solutions). The university can learn a lot from the surrounding community.
What are peoples’ core values? What is the ideology of the people the university is sending their students out to work with? What do they bring to the table? What is democracy?
How about engaged scholarship? Currently, tenure track professors are not reinforced to participate in service learning, and that service is actually devalued.
Problem for the university’s administration: How do you quantify civic engagement? Do you need to? How do you create incentives for both individuals and departments?
Next meeting, bring friends to:
1. Eat up the food provided
2. Add a new dimension to the conversation