The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching announced today that Furman University has received the 2020 Carnegie Community Engagement Classification, an elective designation that indicates commitment to, and activity toward, “finding ways to engage with community partners, building on community assets and addressing a wide array of community challenges.”
Furman is one of only 18 liberal arts and sciences universities to receive the Community Engagement Classification this year, and one of 359 institutions total. It was awarded following a process of self-study, which was later assessed by a national review committee based at Brown University’s Swearer Center, the administrative and research home for the Carnegie Community Engagement Classification.
“These newly-classified and re-classified institutions are doing exceptional work to forward their public purpose in and through community engagement that enriches teaching and research while also benefiting the broader community,” Mathew Johnson, executive director of the Swearer Center, wrote in a letter to awardees.
“The Carnegie application process is deep and rigorous, and I think it validates that mutually beneficial community engagement is in Furman’s DNA,” said Mike Winiski, executive director of Community-Engaged Learning at Furman. “I look forward to using the information from the self-study to ensure that Furman becomes an even more integral part of a Greenville in which everyone flourishes.”
“While Furman is the official recipient of this designation, this is truly an honor that we share with all of the organizations and people we partner with in Greenville and the Upstate,” Furman President Elizabeth Davis said. “The Carnegie classification further demonstrates our commitment to engaging our students, faculty and staff in the community to help study and find solutions to our shared challenges.”
A recent example of Furman’s commitment to community engaged learning includes a 2019 study conducted for United Way of Greenville County by a Furman research team. Among other metrics, the study looks at changing demographics, transportation, workforce readiness and housing affordability as Greenville manages its rapid population growth.
To read more about programs that connect Furman students, faculty and staff to the community – from community health to tax preparation assistance, visit the Community Partnerships web page.