Recipients of the 2010 Outreach Scholarship/W. K. Kellogg Foundation Engagement Award
Finalists for the 2010 C. Peter Magrath University/Community Engagement Award
North Carolina State University
The Riverworks at Sturgeon City
* Winner of the 2010 C. Peter Magrath University/Community Engagement Award
Transforming the environmental and economically devastated Wilson Bay section of Jacksonville, NC into the Riverworks at Sturgeon City community center required a city-community-university partnership. Spawned from a community's desire to reclaim the severely degraded bay, the partnership stimulated the reuse and conversion of a wastewater treatment plant and city landfill and transformed Sturgeon City into a regional education resource.
A joint City of Jacksonville and North Carolina State University effort kick-started the recovery of the bay's degraded ecosystem. A large scale effort was launched to improve water quality including decommissioning the wastewater plant, reducing local run-off, and removal of an old dock leaching hazardous creosote by-products. Wetlands were reestablished and oysters were deployed to serve as a living water filter. The North Carolina State University (NC State) faculty and the College of Design organized community charrettes and student "design studios" and students presented alternative visions for reuse to the city council.
Today Sturgeon City is a 26-acre community green space frequented by residents for walks and picnic lunches and by school groups for hands-on science learning. The Wilson Bay ecosystem has improved and is once again used for recreational boating and fishing. The wetlands have become a haven for waterfowl and other coastal wildlife.
A broadened partnership—including three universities, two community colleges, Camp Lejeune Marine Corps Base, the New River Foundation, numerous local businesses and local residents—now supports the site which has become a major recreational, learning and local economic development asset for the city and county. The site also supports university-led applied research, graduate training and the transfer of aquaculture technologies to the business community.
Jay Levine, Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health, Aquatic Epidemiology and Conservation Laboratory, College of Veterinary Medicine, NC State University
Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis
Educating Our Community Together: A Partnership Between IUPUI and George Washington Community High School
In 1995, the Indianapolis Public School system was forced to consolidate schools in the Near Westside neighborhoods due to falling enrollment. The closure of Washington High School, the educational and civic heart of the Near Westside neighborhood, and several elementary schools dealt a crushing blow. In 1997, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI) established the Office of Neighborhood Partnerships to build long-term strategic partnerships with the Near Westside community and help improve life in Indianapolis. A 1998 Housing and Urban Development (HUD) Community Outreach Partnership Center grant established a task force to develop a plan to reopen the high school. In 2000, IUPUI and the Westside Cooperative Organization (WESCO), working in partnership, reopened the building as a middle school and additional grade levels have been added each successive year.
Today, George Washington Community High School (GWCHS) houses grades 7-12 as a full service community school. The IUPUI-GWCHS partnership has expanded, enabling IUPUI to offer teacher education and service learning classes as GWCHS, provide service-based financial aid for college students to work in the building, and open and staff a community fitness center. GWCHS has been recognized nationally as a model for school/community partnerships and replication of the model is underway at three additional community high schools and several elementary schools.
Robert Bringle, Ph.D., Chancellor's Professor of Psychology and Philanthropic Studies; Executive Director of the IUPUI Center for Service and Learning
West Virginia University
Health Sciences and Technology Academy (HSTA)
In 1994, West Virginia University embarked on a community-campus partnership with selected counties to help fulfill the university's mission to make high quality college education accessible to students across all economic strata. One aspect of the partnership is the Health Sciences and Technology Academy (HSTA) which reaches out to approximately 800 students annually in grades 9-12 from under-represented groups and prepares them for college and professional school in careers in health, science, math, and technology.
HSTA brings under-represented students and their teachers to campuses across West Virginia each summer for laboratory and classroom training and enrichment activities, then provides the infrastructure and support for community-based science projects mentored by teachers and community leaders during the school year.
HSTA aims to share the resources and talents of the partnership, to encourage higher education faculty members and administrators, public school teachers and community leaders to assume the responsibility of mentoring high school students. The ultimate goal is to increase the college-going rate among under-represented students in the Appalachian region, to improve science and math education, to empower communities through leadership development of their youth, and ultimately, to increase the number of health care providers, scientists and science educators in West Virginia's currently under-served communities.
HSTA is governed by a state-wide Joint Governing Board with volunteer representation from Local Governing Boards leading each region. Board membership includes parents, students, public school personnel, local community members and higher education personnel; however the majority of the board members represent the local communities. The success of HSTA rests in the community's feelings of ownership and control, and long-term partnerships among higher education, public education at the state and local level, and rural communities. HSTA has been highly successful with 97 percent of the 1150 plus HSTA alumni attending college through legislative support consisting of tuition and fee waivers accepted at all state supported colleges/universities (undergraduate) and health professions schools.
The success of HSTA rests in the community's feelings of ownership and control, and long-term partnerships among higher education, public education at the state and local level, and rural communities. HSTA has been highly successful with 97 percent of the 1150 plus HSTA alumni attending college through legislative support consisting of tuition and fee waivers accepted at all state supported colleges/universities (undergraduate) and health professions schools.
Ann Chester, Ph.D., Assistant Vice President for Health Sciences for Social Justice, Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center, West Virginia University.
University of Idaho
Better Together: The University of Idaho and Coeur d'Alene Reservation Communities
The large scale partnership between the University of Idaho (UI) and small towns on the Coeur d'Alene Reservation began in fall 2006, when the communities joined UI Extension's Horizons program.
The Idaho Horizons program, run by University of Idaho Extension, is part of a seven-state initiative funded by the Northwest Area Foundation to reduce rural and reservation poverty. Led by a steering committee of community representatives and guided by a UI Extension faculty member, residents in the four communities participated in conversations about poverty, learned new leadership skills, created a long-term vision and took action to overcome a legacy of underinvestment and poverty.
During the communities' participation in Horizons, the university's Building Sustainable Communities Initiative (BSCI) brought students faculty and local residents together to work on projects that would help the reservation communities achieve sustainable design. Based on the vision and priorities that emerged from Horizons, local residents gave clear direction to students and faculty on what specific assistance was needed.
Fifteen bioregional planning graduate students participated in service-learning and internships in the communities. They created a bioregional atlas, updated zoning ordinances, laid the foundation for an arts council, designed site plans for a 10-unit affordable housing development and created pre-design plans for a tribal education institute.
A new non-profit organization, One Sky North Idaho, was created to develop a thriving community based on the creative economy—a priority strategy identified in Horizons. Decision making and responsibility were shared between the university and the communities throughout the partnership, which continues to yield tremendous impact. Based on the students' work, the tribe has received two major HUD grants totaling $2.5 million for wastewater treatment and affordable housing. The infrastructure project is now complete, and the tribe broke ground for the new housing development earlier this year. Looking ahead, UI's College of Education and the Coeur d'Alene Tribe have embarked on a major scholarship initiative to address health problems among residents on the reservation.
Priscilla Salant, Coordinator, University Outreach and Engagement, University of Idaho
The Men on Business — A College Assurance Program
The "Men on Business – A College Assurance Program" (M-O-B) at Lincoln University Cooperative Extension Urban Impact Center in St. Louis is conducted in partnership with St. Louis area schools. The primary focus of the program is to transform boys into young men, from high school freshmen to seniors, who learn to believe in themselves enough to apply for and enter college.
M-O-B has touched the lives of over 150 young men. One hundred percent of the program participants have been promoted from grade to grade and have graduated from high school. Over fifteen percent of them have gone on to college.
Yvonne Mathews, Interim Associate Extension Administrator, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension