University-Community Forum in Warren, Minn., on Saturday, April 27, 2013

The annual Community Connect Forum, coordinated by the University of North Dakota Center for Community Engagement, will be hosted this year by Warren, Minn. on Saturday, April 27.  Community members, faculty, and students from around the region will gather for this year's theme of "Sustainable Communities".  

Registration for the forum is free, and can be found at  The website also includes a schedule for the day of the forum. Dan Svedarsky, director of the U of M, Crookston Center for Sustainability, and Chris May, NW Clean Energy Resource Team coordinator, are panelists.  Deb Zak, Extnsion Regional Director, and Linda Kingery, executive director of the NW RSDP, will facilitate an afternoon session, as will Ben Anderson, Extension Regional director in the Moorhead office. 

The forum will focus on civic, economic, and environmental sustainability, addressing topics such as smart government, new business ownership models, and changes in agriculture and energy.  As hosts of the forum, Warren will have the opportunity to showcase its own town story and their efforts toward creating more sustainable practices in their community such as becoming a GreenStep City.  Warren will also highlight their unique assets with their downtown businesses and nearby Audubon wildlife preserve.  Participants will have the opportunity to network and view exhibits of different regional projects, agencies, and resources.  

The forum will be held in the Warren-Alvarado-Oslo School.  There will be free transportation available for UND participants on the day of the forum to travel to Warren; the bus will leave Memorial Union at 8 AM.  Warren is about 30 miles northeast of Grand Forks.  

About the Center:  The UND Center for Community Engagement links academic resources with community needs by connecting students and faculty to teaching and research projects off campus.  It was created by an act of the North Dakota State Board of Higher Education in 2004.  The Center serves as a catalyst for faculty and students to learn from and with nonprofit organizations, rural communities, tribal communities, and other public partners through local and regional initiatives.  

About Community Connect:  The Community Connect project provides opportunities for rural communities to work together with UND faculty and students on the challenges and opportunities in our region.  There are three components to the Community Connect project - a community-university forum, a print journal, and a website with an online academic journal.  

About our sponsors:  The Community Connect project is supported in part by a grant from the Otto Bremer Foundation and sponsorships from the United Valley Bank, the Northwest Regional Sustainable Development Partnership, the Farmers Union Insurance, and private donations. 

Contact: Lana Rakow;; 701-777-2287