In August 2016, Chancellor Phil DiStefano signed Campus Compact's  30th Anniversary Action Statement of Presidents and Chancellors, which recommitted the campus to the public purposes of higher education and sought to create a concrete civic action plan. Campus Compact is a coalition of more than 1,100 colleges and universities, founded in 1985 by university presidents and education policy leaders who were concerned about the ongoing health and strength of democracy in the United States.

Since then, a group of deans and representatives from our office, the CU Boulder Faculty Assembly and CU Engage have been meeting to determine how CU Boulder can broaden its commitment to civic engagement and recommend concrete ways to support and publicize exemplary civic work.  

Public discussions

As part of the civic action planning process, the group has held public dialogues to explore the full scope of civic engagement on campus and how to broaden its impact. The first was held on Oct. 19, 2017 during a community engagement coffee hour series. In addition, three sessions titled CU and the Community: How do we engage more completely were part of CU Boulder's Academic Futures, a campus conversation that is focused on listening to the interests and concerns of faculty, staff and students to make sure that CU Boulder's central mission—teaching and learning, discovery and creation—shapes the campus' collective efforts.

CU Dialogues, a program housed in CU Engage, will facilitate additional dialogues in 2018 among campus divisions, departments, centers and institutes.

Civic engagement 

CU Boulder faculty, staff and students are involved with more than 200 programs and projects that play an important role in achieving the university’s mission of public service. As a national leader in experiential and community-based approaches to civic education, CU Boulder also provides students with the opportunity to develop practical civic leadership skills both in and out of the classroom, from student government to a popular leadership studies minor.

Both OOE and CU Engage are campuswide resources for outreach and engagement programs. OOE provides leadership, advocacy and support for public outreach and community engagement across campus units through university-community partnerships, consultation services, funding and strategic initiatives that meet public needs. CU Engage is CU Boulder's Center for Community-Based Learning and Research and works collaboratively with community groups to address complex public challenges through academic courses, research projects and social justice programs.

How to get involved

Interested in exploring how CU Boulder can support the health of our democracy or what role teaching, research, creative work and outreach plays in achieving the university’s mission of public service?

Contact David Meens, director of the Office for Outreach and Engagement or Roudy Hildreth, associate director of CU Engage.