During the IU Council for Regional Engagement and Economic Development’s (CREED) spring meeting at IUPUI on March 2, the critical roles that regional campuses play in economic development, philanthropy, health care, education and regional collaboration were repeatedly emphasized.
One vehicle that helps provide such leadership is the Thriving Communities, Thriving State initiative led by the Indiana University Public Policy Institute. Through a “place-based approach” that recognizes urban, mid-sized and small-town/rural communities, the program identifies areas of focus for each that are relevant to each locality’s strengths and circumstances. Click here for more details on this important initiative.
“CREED can provide resonance for these goals and help answer questions such as ‘what can we do to advance and move forward’ or ‘how do we change the approach.’ CREED can bring together people who ought to know and understand these efforts, as well as provide regional leadership and align with other initiatives.”
–– Mark Lawrence, director, IU Public Policy Institute
The IU Bicentennial Strategic Plan objective that calls for regional campuses to pursue the Carnegie Foundation’s Community Engagement Classification — which recognizes a demonstrated institutional focus on community engagement by colleges and universities — also was discussed.
Three IU campuses — Bloomington, Indianapolis and Fort Wayne — are currently listed as “community engagement classified institutions,” with IUPUI represented on the national advisory panel for the selection process. For the next classification in 2020, the application process starts in 2018. Because regional campuses serve as “stewards of place” for their respective communities, many are deserving of Carnegie’s classification, said Bill McKinney, IU senior adviser for distance education.
“As ‘stewards of place,’ regional campuses tailor the needs of education for local communities and the region. They are tremendous sources of intellectual capital and having regional campuses engaged in the community serves as a critical component of student success.”
— Bill McKinney, IU senior adviser for distance education
Other topics addressed by CREED included:
- Planning and preparations for the second annual E2E Convergence: An Indiana education-to-employment conversation, are set to be issued March 11. The Innovate Indiana-sponsored event brings together stakeholders from across Indiana to facilitate the development of pathways that are key to ensuring the career-readiness of Indiana colleges students as they transition to the workplace. Last year, about 150 representatives of 22 Indiana colleges and universities — as well as industry, government and workforce development specialists, attended the event. This years event is set for May 19 in Room 450 of IUPUI’s Campus Center. Click here to register.
- A Regional Economic Development (RED) Fund matching grant of $2,500 was awarded to IU Southeast to support a series of business-focused events, workshops and seminars, including IU Southeast’s Economic Outlook, Mid-Year Economic Update and CEO Roundtable.
- Duke Energy’s vice president of community relations and economic development, Marvin Blade, delivered an overview of the utility’s economic development initiatives and organization in Indiana.
- Rebecca Carl, associate vice president and chief of staff for IU’s Office of the Vice President of Engagement, provided an overview of IU President Michael A. McRobbie’s series of regional campus visits, including his most recent trip to the IU East campus in Richmond;
- Indiana University Purdue University Fort Wayne Director of Engagement Sean Ryan briefed the council on IPFW’s new Campus to Community Connections program, which is aimed at further promoting collaborations between regional businesses and IPFW faculty and students.
CREED’s next meeting is set for Thursday, May 5 at IU East.