Awards & Recognitions

Commitment to Community Engagement is an integral part of the mission and purpose of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. As a testament to that dedication and focus, the university and its members have been honored with various awards and recognitions.


Community Engagement Classification by The Carnegie Foundation

In 2015, UNCG was re-certified by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching as a community-engaged institution. UNCG was among a select group of 119 universities and colleges nationwide to be recognized by the Carnegie Foundation for its 2008 Community Engagement Elective Classification. UNCG received the classification in both categories: curricular engagement and outreach and partnerships. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching defines community engagement as collaboration between institutions of higher education and their larger communities (local, regional/state, national, global) for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity.


Community Impact and Outcomes Award for Community-Engaged Research

Sharon Morrison, Sudha Shreeniwas, Andrew Young and the Montagnard Dega Association/Montagnard American Organization received the inaugural Community Impact and Outcomes Award given by the International Association for Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement. This award recognizes service-learning and research carried out in partnership with communities to address the priorities of community stakeholders, which are guided by principles of reciprocity, mutual respect, shared authority, and co-creation, and which have produced measurable and sustained impact. These scholars work to advance understanding, action and community transformation through the  Montagnard/Southeast Asian Community Disparities Research Network, and beyond.


Thomas Ehrlich Civically Engaged Faculty Award

Diya Abdo, Director of the Center for New North Carolinians, received the Thomas Ehrlich Civically Engaged Faculty Award in March 2020. Honorees are recognized for exemplary engaged scholarship, including leadership in advancing students’ civic learning, conducting community-based research, fostering reciprocal community partnerships, building institutional commitments to service-learning and civic engagement, and other means of enhancing higher education’s contributions to the public good.


NC Campus Compact Engaged Faculty Scholar

Laura Gonzalez, Associate Professor, Teacher Education and Higher Education, was selected as one of North Carolina Campus Compact’s Engaged Faculty Scholars for 2019. The Engaged Faculty Scholars program allows two faculty members from our network the opportunity to carry out a self-designed project that advances the scholarship of engagement at their institution. The selected faculty also work together to expand faculty engagement at another member campus.


Barbara A. Holland Scholar-Administrator Award

Emily Janke, Director of the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement, received the Barbara A. Holland Scholar-Administrator Award from the Coalition of Urban and Metropolitan Universities in October 2018. The award honors a bold, mid-career scholar-administrator whose leadership and intellectual voice illuminates the transformative power of urban and metropolitan higher education.


John Saltmarsh Award for Emerging Leaders in Civic Engagement

Emily Janke, Ph.D., Director of the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement, received the John Saltmarsh Award for Emerging Leaders in Civic Engagement in June 2012 at the American Democracy Project/The Democracy Commitment’s Annual Conference. The Saltmarsh Award is given in recognition of exemplary early-career leaders who are advancing the wider civic engagement movement through higher education to build a broader public culture of democracy.


Robert L. Sigmon Service-Learning Award

Travis L. Hicks, Associate Professor of Interior Architecture, received the Robert L. Sigmon Service-Learning Award from North Carolina Campus Compact in February 2015 at the Pathways to Achieving Civic Engagement (PACE) Conference. Named for the service-learning pioneer and North Carolina native, the Sigmon Service-Learning Award recognizes a faculty member for service-learning experience and impact on the community, institution, and students. Previously, Spoma Jovanovic, Professor of Communication Studies, received the award 2012 at the 10th Annual Civic Engagement Institute.


Publicly Active Graduate Education (PAGE) Fellowship

The PAGE Fellows program by Imagining America is distinctive in that its agenda is set, almost exclusively, by graduate students. PAGE Fellows participate in a yearlong working group for collaborative art-making, teaching, writing, storytelling, and co-creating knowledge within and for community. The program offers ongoing professional mentorship and emotional support to fellows, especially toward navigating unjust institutional barriers.

UNCG’s PAGE Fellows:

  • 2011 – Kristin Medlin, MPA in Public Administration, MS in Educational Research and Methodology
  • 2018 – Santos Flores, MS in Peace and Conflict Studies, current Kinesiology doctoral candidate

Community Impact Student Award

UNCG Senior Frannie Williams (’13) recieved the Community Impact Student Award from North Carolina Campus Compact in Nobember 2012 at the Citizenship, Service, Networking, and Partnerships (CSNAP) Student Conference. The Award recognizes one student per Campus Compact member institution who exhibits outstanding leadership and innovative approaches in their civic engagement efforts.


IARSLCE Early Career Research Award

Emily Janke, Ph.D., Director of the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement at UNCG, received the Early Career Research Award from the International Association for Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement (IARSLCE) in November 2012. The Award is given in recognition of outstanding early career contributions to scholarship on service-learning and community engagement.


Outstanding Faculty Contributions to Service-Learning Instruction in Higher Education Award

Spoma Jovanovic, Ph.D., Professor of Communication Studies, recieved the Outstanding Faculty Contributions to Service-Learning Instruction in Higher Education Award from the Gulf South Summit Conference on Service-Learning and Civic Engagement through Higher Education. The award is given to a member of the teaching faculty who has demonstrated excellence incorporating service-learning pedagogy in the college/university classroom, and shows evidence of benefits to students, evidence of collaboration with community partners and/or service beneficiaries in course design, and demonstration of sustained commitment by incorporating service-learning consistently for at least three academic terms.


Leo M. Lambert Engaged Leader Award

UNCG’s former Chancellor Linda P. Brady received the inaugural Lambert Award from North Carolina Campus Compact in February 2012 at the 10th annual Civic Engagement Institute. The Lambert Award will be presented annually to a North Carolina college president or chancellor committed to creating and sustaining engagement that deeply impacts the community and campus.


National Council on Public History’s Graduate Student Project Award

Eight second-year students in UNCG’s masters program in history and museum studies have won the National Council on Public History’s 2013 Graduate Student Project Award for their work on “Past the Pipes:Stories of the Terra Cotta Community,” One such national award is given annually. The designation recognizes the students’ work in building community partnerships, recording oral interviews, designing and facilitating public programs, gathering images and artifacts, creating media pieces and installing the exhibition.


Civic Engagement Professional of the Year

Lori Kniffin, former Assistant Director for the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement, received the Civic Engagement Professional of the Year award from North Carolina Campus Compact in February 2020. The award recognizes a staff person at a member campus who has worked to institutionalize service, fostered a vision of service, supported faculty and students, and formed innovative campus-community partnerships.