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News & Media

2020 Carnegie Community Engagement Classification Recipients Announced

February 4, 2020

One-hundred nineteen U.S. colleges and universities have received the Carnegie Community Engagement Classification, an elective designation that indicates institutional commitment to community engagement by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. A listing of the institutions that currently hold the Classification endorsement can be found here.

“The institutions that we are recognizing today are doing extraordinary work in addressing their societal responsibilities in and through community engagement and service. In doing so, they bring scholarship, knowledge, and expertise to bear in the address of real challenges in our communal lives,” said Paul LeMahieu, senior vice president at the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. “They inspire us, even as they instruct us how to be our best selves in service to our communities. These are the very purposes for which the Carnegie Endorsement was established. Its execution, under the stewardship of the Howard Swearer Center and Brown University, has helped us fulfill that purpose for the greater public good.”

The Carnegie Community Engagement Classification is awarded following a process of self-study by each institution, which is then assessed by a national review committee led by the Swearer Center for Public Engagement at Brown University, the administrative and research home for the Carnegie Community Engagement Classification. The classification has been the leading framework for institutional assessment and recognition of community engagement in U.S. higher education for the past 14 years with multiple classification cycles in 2006, 2008, 2010, 2015 and 2020.

Of the 119 institutions classified in the 2020 cycle, 44 are receiving the classification for the first time while 75 are now re-classified, after being classified originally in 2010 or 2015. These 119 institutions join the 240 institutions that earned the classification during the 2015 selection process, for a total of 359 campuses who are currently active holders of this important designation. Among the 2020 recipients of the classification, 67 are public institutions and 52 are private. For Carnegie’s Basic Classification, 52 are classified as research universities, 39 are master’s colleges and universities, 22 are baccalaureate colleges, 3 are community colleges, and 3 institutions have a specialized focus—arts, medicine, and other health professions. They represent campuses in 37 states and U.S. territories.

“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,” noted Mathew Johnson, executive director of the Swearer Center. “We also note that many more institutions who are not receiving classification today are doing similar important work and we celebrate them as well,” Johnson added. “It is clear that many campuses are facing difficult times and finding it challenging to maintain and advance their community engagement in the current climate. It is our hope that by celebrating these classified campuses others might come to see community engagement as part of the strategy to address the current set of challenges in higher education.”

  • Commission on Economic & Community Engagement

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