Just as urban and metropolitan universities and colleges serve an important role in their communities, cities serve important roles in students’ academic and personal growth. Urban institutions provide them with the resources to grow and thrive in a fast-paced environment. With better opportunities for experiential learning, research and development, creative activity, and partnerships that create immediate and substantive impact on communities, this urban advantage was the focus of the 23rd Annual CUMU Conference “The Urban Advantage” (CUMU, 2017). The conference was held in Denver, Colorado in October 2017. Presentations explored the unique learning opportunities provided by urban universities known to improve student persistence and successful career development (AAC&U, n.d.). Scholars and activists called for urban IHEs to consider how they might engage with their surrounding communities more effectively to solve problems, improve the local economy, and educate a professional 21st century-relevant workforce. Finally, they underscored the imperative that metropolitan colleges and universities stay true to their public mission.
Guest Editor: Vicki L. Golich, Ph.D., Metropolitan State University of Denver