Conceptualizing Community Engagement: Starting a Campus-Wide Dialogue
Institutions of higher education are increasingly compelled to produce evidence that illustrates their contribution to society. In this age of demonstrating value added, self-assessment is critical for urban and metropolitan universities. This study will explore the design and implementation of a landscape analysis – phase one of an in-depth self-assessment – at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO). This process is intended to help universities gain a better understanding of how community engagement is conceptualized and institutionalized on their campus. A thorough understanding of the meaning of, and linguistics associated with, community engagement is imperative for the creation of community engagement measurement and assessment mechanisms. The authors will share the methodology and key findings, which include the discovery of domains of community engagement and acknowledgement of a spectrum of engagement.
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