banner for the place-based justice network members

Augsburg University 

Augsburg University is committed to participation as a contributing community member in the neighborhood we call home, Cedar-Riverside. The Sabo Center stewards this commitment by leading Augsburg’s university-wide place-based work and anchor institution strategy, as well as serving as the touchpoint for community-engaged learning in Cedar-Riverside and Minneapolis.

Bethel University

Frogtown and Summit-University (FSU) neighborhoods in St. Paul and Bethel University community have joined hands in a unique partnership of learning. The Partnership Advisory Committee (PAC) serves as a community/agency/university body. The PAC fosters longstanding and intentional relationships with the FSU communities through a partnership based on trust, accountability, and reciprocity. This unique partnership, acting as a bridge between campus and community, is building unity within a diverse society. The mission of the partnership between stakeholders in the Frogtown and Summit-U Neighborhoods and Bethel University is to build and nurture an intentional, mutually beneficial, long-term relationship with stakeholders in the FSU neighborhoods and Bethel.

Brown University

The Swearer Center for Public Service at Brown University is a community of scholars, students, practitioners and community members who work together to build on community strengths and address community challenges. Our work engages all as co-learners, co-teachers, co-actors and co-creators of knowledge and action. Through the creative capacities of our students, staff, faculty and community partners we explore, build and implement collaborative and strategic projects, programs and initiatives. Our work yields transformative learning, and positive sustainable change, through collective action. The Center engages with more than 1000 students per year, through and with 80+ community partners — more than half of which are in the Greater Providence, Rhode Island area. In our 30-year history, we have developed and nurtured many deep — and deeply rewarding — relationships with individuals and organizations in Providence that continue to inspire us and our work.

Creighton University

As part of our strategic plan, Creighton is working to establish place-based community engagement. We will be partnering with neighbors in North Omaha, a primarily African American area of the city. We are deciding if we want to make our PBCE initiative the "24th St Corridor," which also includes the Hispanic/Latino(a) area of the city. Whatever the initiative, Creighton hasa strong health care focus(medical, PT, OT, pharmacy, dentistry, nursing) and a law school in addition to graduate and undergraduate programs.

Dominican University of CA

Coming soon.

Drexel University

Drexel University's place-based civic engagement and anchor mission work focuses on West Philadelphia and the West Philadelphia Promise Zone. We do traditional student civic engagement with ongoing opportunities for student leadership development, and our Dornsife Center for Neighborhood Partnerships is a community-based resource center. We also have local hiring and procurement initiatives, with climate and sustainability a new addition to our portfolio.

Fairfield University

Our place-based community engagement initiative is anchored in a partnership between Fairfield University and Cesar Batalla Elementary School in the West End Neighborhood of Bridgeport, CT.

Florida State University

The Center for Leadership & Social Change transforms lives through identity development, leadership education and community engagement. We encourage students to learn, serve and transform through programming that encompasses leadership, diversity and service. We offer more than 30 programs intended to foster opportunities and vision to create positive, sustainable change in their communities and the broader world. Opportunities range from one-time service at local nonprofits to year-long training and leadership roles. We offer training on such topics as leadership development, identity and cultural competence, service learning, and community change.

Fordham University

Fordham University's Center for Community Engaged Learning is committed to the mutually beneficial evolution of our partnerships in New York City, specifically in the boroughs of the Bronx and Manhattan where our campuses are located. The Center works to connect faculty leaders with community leaders in the development of civically-engaged student leaders. The CCEL at Fordham is exploring a place-based strategic initiative alongside our closest partner schools in the Bronx.

Georgetown University

Georgetown University is exploring a place-based strategy with several community partners in Washington, DC Southeast section of the city.

Gonzaga University

Opportunity Northeast, Gonzaga’s place-based initiative, is strategically focused on improving outcomes for children, youth and families in Northeast Spokane. This endeavor engages Gonzaga students in transformative, real-world educational experiences, and offers staff and faculty the opportunity to engage more deeply in the shared work of community development through community-engaged scholarship, teaching, research and implementation.

 John Carroll University

Our place-based initiative is driven by the needs and voices of the members of the communities with whom we work. Through visioning processes, community dialogues, and ongoing relationships, our work leverages the capacities of the university to respond to the requests and articulated needs of our community partners. Additionally, through the JCU in the City initiative, we are able to provide students with dynamic, high-impact courses, internships, and experiential learning opportunities that cultivate a student’s sense of civic responsibility, foster critical thinking and analytical skills, hone their creative problem-solving abilities, and learn about the power of solidarity and collaboration in confronting the social issues of our times.

La Salle University 

Community Engaged Learning programs at La Salle exist to create and support meaningful educational experiences for students through direct engagement with the city, its resources, and its residents. Our programs invite students to experience the many cultural assets of our community, as well as to witness, critically reflect upon, and respond to its challenges. We aim to foster the kind of education that is at the heart of La Salle’s mission: one that empowers students to live fuller and more thoughtful lives, while working for the common good. Our Community Engaged programs take multiple forms:

  1. Community-based learning is a pedagogical strategy that integrates community engagement, in the form of dialogue or research, with academic content and critical reflection. CBL is rooted in the belief that communities are spaces of inherent educational value, and that engaging with our community in thoughtful and rigorous ways enriches the learning experience and strengthens our community as a whole. Our Together and By Association (TABA) courses, service-learning courses, and Inside Out courses form the core of our Community-Based Learning programs.
  2. Engagement in the Philadelphia community (city as classroom programming)
  3. Engagement with global Lasallian community

La Salle's Community Engaged Learning programs are always evolving to accommodate the interests of faculty and students, the needs of community partners, and shifts in scholarly perspectives on Community-Engaged Learning. 

Loyola University Chicago

The School of Education place-based engagement work includes a 7-year partnership with our local high school, Senn High School. The partnership features more than two dozen initiatives during each school year that support core strategies of teacher development, college access and success, and civic engagement. In 2017, the School of Education launched Schools 2020, an initiative in line with the university's 5-year plan to increase engagement in our local communities (Rogers Park and Edgewater) through partnership work in five additional schools. In 2108, Loyola University became the lead agency for five community schools efforts designed to transform neighborhood public schools into hubs of community development. Our relationships with partner schools are mutually beneficial and premised on strengthening academic achievement, social emotional development, and healthy communities.

Loyola University Maryland

The mission of Loyola’s York Road Initiative is to collaborate with neighbors and partners to produce positive change for all residents in the York Road communities of Baltimore City. At the direction of neighbors and others, the Initiative focuses on the educational development, health, and well-being of community residents, as well as on the economic viability of our neighborhoods, including our residential and retail establishments.

Penn State University, Greater Allegheny

As part of the strategic plan for Penn State Greater Allegheny (PSUGA), the campus has identified one of our essential principles as External Engagement, with goals including nurturing civically-minded students, creating community engagement opportunities through coursework and promoting continuing education. PSUGA is doing so by expanding community engagement efforts and focusing on place, specifically the Mon Valley of the Greater Pittsburgh Region. These place-based efforts include initiatives such as the Crossing Bridges Summit, one of PSUGA's signature programs in which students, faculty, and staff engage with community members to address racial divides in the Mon Valley, and efforts initiated through the Mon Valley Launchbox, a collaboration between PSUGA, Invent Penn State and the City of McKeesport to engage the community, entrepreneurs and students in encouraging economic development and improving the quality of life in the Mon Valley.


Point Loma University

The mission of the Center for Justice & Reconciliation is to leverage research, advocacy and innovation, dedicated to justice and reconciliation, to transform our community through social change. Our goal is to expand campus wide service learning and civic engagement through community partnerships and campus collaborations.

California Campus Compact 

California Campus Compact builds the collective commitment and capacity of colleges, universities and communities to advance civic and community engagement for a healthy, just and democratic society. We are a coalition of 45+ colleges in California, and we offer support, resources and services to faculty, staff, students, and administrators at our member colleges.

Learn more: Website, FacebookYouTube 

St. Catherine University

We focus on civic and community engagement through course-based community-engaged learning, student employment, research and scholarship and civic initiatives, working in collaboration within the city of St. Paul and broader Twin Cities metro.

Saint Joseph's University

Utilize Place-Based Community Engagement Process to identify community partners, strengthen our relationship with the Samuel L. Gompers Elementary School. Saint Joseph's University also seeks to duplicate the Gompers model with other local schools and community-based organization and integrate and coordinate community engagement efforts across all university departments.

Saint Mary's College of California

Growing out of Campus Compact's Civic Action Planning process, the College has identified four communities for our place-based efforts. The work is catalyzing the efforts of students, faculty, staff, and community partners and is connected to the undergraduate core curriculum.

Santa Clara University

Thriving Neighbors Thriving Neighbors is an engaged teaching, scholarship, and sustainable development program that links Santa Clara University with the five, predominantly Latino, immigrant neighborhoods that make up the Greater Washington community in San Jose. The mission of this program is to advance the community and its people by promoting economic pathways, skills / training, and supplemental youth education to advance school readiness, support ongoing achievement and enhance access to post-secondary education. The program utilizes the collaboration between community, faculty & staff, and students to create
initiatives for the betterment of the community as a whole. Our partnership with the Greater Washington community works in solidarity with community members to promote respect for human dignity, and create sustainable program models that improve community and university outcomes while making the community a more just and sustainable place.

Seattle University

Founded in 2004, the Center for Community Engagement is a dynamic outgrowth of Seattle University’s Jesuit Catholic tradition and mission of “educating the whole person, to professional formation and to empowering leaders for a just and humane world.” The Center serves as the main entry point for students, faculty and staff who want to engage in the local community. The Center also acts as the focal point for community-based organizations and government institutions seeking University support to address unmet community needs. The Center encourages all forms of community engagement including direct service, philanthropy, activism, political participation, social entrepreneurship, community-based research, and advocacy. The Center’s signature focus is the Seattle University Youth Initiative (SUYI). Since 2011, the Youth Initiative unites the campus and its wider community to enhance Seattle U students’ learning and improve the academic achievement of 1,000+ neighborhood youth from low-income backgrounds. The Center pursues SUYI’s goals through a holistic approach focusing on strong schools, stable housing, access to health care, safe neighborhoods and living-wage jobs.

Swarthmore College

The Eugene M. Lang Center for Civic and Social Responsibility was established to inspire and provide vision, leadership, and support toward fulfilling an essential dimension of the liberal arts mission of Swarthmore College: to prepare and motivate students to understand and engage issues of civic and social concern and, as active citizens of our democracy, to set their own paths toward shaping a more just and compassionate world. While the Lang Center sponsors several place-based community engagement initiatives, we are particularly involved in Chester, PA and Philadelphia, PA.

Touro University

Our mission at Touro University California is the following: Touro University California provides graduate and professional educational excellence in the fields of Health Sciences, Public Health, and Education. The TUC learning experience is student-centered, enriched by focused research and scholarship, and prepares professionals for rewarding lives in service to others both locally and around the globe. We prepare individuals who will be socially just and who will serve with under-served populations. We focus a lot of this effort on the City of Vallejo including a Student Run Free Clinic, a Mobile Homelessness Medical Clinic, a Mobile Diabetes Clinic, and general events throughout the community, health organizations and schools.

Towson University

The Office of Partnerships and Outreach (OPO) within the Division of Strategic Partnerships and Applied Research and serves as Towson University's front door for community engagement and partnerships. We work to make critical connections between TU faculty, staff, and students and stakeholders from across the region. Partnerships and relationships are interdisciplinary, embedded in both curricular and co-curricular learning, and cross multiple programs and impact areas. OIIE strives to foster a culture of integrity that values shared responsibility as a critical element of an inclusive, equitable, and diverse community. This vision, built on the belief that a diverse and inclusive campus community enhances our institution, will strengthen us all in immeasurable ways.

University of Maryland, Baltimore 

The Office of Community Engagement (OCE) leverages the intellectual, economic, and human resources of the University of Maryland, Baltimore to improve quality of life in West Baltimore and beyond. “Community engagement” at UMB refers to a wide spectrum of activities ranging from direct service to institutional policy change to community organization. The team’s work focuses on three issue areas: (1) Public health and wellness, (2) education and workforce development,
and (3) economic and community development.

Find Out More: WebsiteTwitterFacebook

University of Pittsburgh 

Pitt Neighborhood Commitments build stronger communities and a stronger University based on long-term place-based partnerships. In partnership with local communities, the University is making a minimum 15-year commitment of investment, infrastructure, programming, and dedicated staff in neighborhoods such as Homewood and the Hill District. Our neighborhood commitments are anchored by a series of neighborhood-based Community Engagement Centers. These centers serve as a front door to Pitt and serve as a symbol of our desire to build relationships, collaborate, and partner. Neighborhood Commitments is a program of the Senior Vice Chancellor’s Office, housed in Community and Government Relations.

University of Portland

The Moreau Center for Service and Justice at the University of Portland works in partnership with local and global communities to engage critical human and environmental concerns through active learning, mutually beneficial service, and experience-based leadership development rooted in Catholic social teaching. As part of a collaborative campus effort, we are exploring a more intentional, coordinated place-based approach to our work with schools, organizations, and neighbors in the North Portland area where the university is located.

University of San Diego

The goal of CASA’s Youth Engagement Initiative (YEI) is to provide reciprocal learning experiences with a community of learners who are creative, critical thinkers and whose sense of compassion calls on them to form a more just society. The initiative has work-study students and student leaders who are trained to be classroom and afterschool mentors and spend 8-10 hours a week in a K-12 community site, with a community partner in the role of a co-educator and the students are given a chance to recognize the high-impact of place-based initiatives in closing the opportunity gap that exists in our current K-12 education system. Program support and resources are focused in Linda Vista and support classrooms, after school programs, counselors, resource teachers, and extra curricular activities that promote social and emotional wellness. USD students work with community co-educator partners to create programs that incorporate critical pedagogy that is culturally responsive.

University of San Francisco

Engage San Francisco is an intentional, systematic and transformative university-community initiative that will achieve community-identified outcomes supporting children, youth and families in the Western Addition through student learning, research and teaching consistent with University of San Francisco’s mission and vision 2028. This university-wide initiative supports African American neighbors living below San Francisco’s poverty level to achieve their full potential in education, health, career development, and housing. Goals Engage San Francisco has two key goals: Contribute to and support a vibrant, thriving community for children, youth and families and the Western Addition Enhance student learning and faculty research in the Jesuit tradition with key connections to the University of San Francisco’s Mission and Vision 2028.

University of Utah, University Neighborhood Partners

University Neighborhood Partners brings together University of Utah and west side Salt Lake City people and resources in mutual learning, action, and benefit — a community coming together. The University and west side neighborhoods share a vision of a community woven together through partnerships based on mutual empowerment, discovery, and learning rooted in diverse life experiences. By addressing systemic barriers to educational success, these collaborative partnerships foster increased access to higher education for west side residents, a University enriched by its involvement in the broader community, and an enhanced quality of life for all involved.

Find Out More: WebsiteFacebook, TwitterInstagram

University of Washington - Othello Commons 

Othello-UW Commons adds value to existing and new community-engaged initiatives between the University of Washington and Southeast Seattle communities. Our Guiding Principals Involve and engage community partners, prioritizing community-informed work that aligns with the mission of the University of Washington Foster and engage in just and equitable relationships between the community and the UW Be transparent and accountable in a spirit of mutuality and solidarity

University of Wisconsin-Madison

The University of Wisconsin-Madison supports high-quality community engagement in a number of ways. Although we have a number of place-based engagement efforts, one of our most exciting is the South Madison Partnership, an initiative designed to meet the South Madison community’s needs and foster mutually beneficial relationships.

Located in The Village on Park, the space recently underwent an expansion and encourages engagement between community members and UW–Madison in accessible and meaningful ways. The new space, completed in summer 2020, now has five private offices, eight classrooms, co-working spaces, three conference rooms, a kitchenette and an open gathering space to better support current and future growth as an important community resource.

Whitworth University

Since 2004, Whitworth University has committed to serve the West Central neighborhood of Spokane, located approximately seven miles from its campus. With the goal of growing reciprocal and sustainable relationships between the university and neighborhood, Whitworth’s West Central partnership initially invested service-learning programs, university research, and human capital in its partner neighborhood. The partnership was rooted in the vision of Christian Community Development (CCD), and still upholds elements of CCD philosophy in its strategic planning, alongside principles of Asset-Based Community Development. With funding from the Dornsife Foundation in 2015, the partnership has grown to include a focus on university investment of capital resources, purchasing, and human-resource assets in West Central to build on the community’s existing strengths. Today the Dornsife Center for Community Engagement connects the resources of the campus and West Central to build knowledge and grow a strong neighborhood.

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