At the Institute for Community and Economic Engagement (ICEE), we study and promote community engagement within UNCG and beyond as a distinctive and transformative approach to teaching, research, creative activity, and service, which requires collaborative and reciprocal partnerships. We achieve this through pursuing active research and scholarship, supporting institutional strategic initiatives, and providing professional development opportunities. We promote community engagement as a strategy to positively and sustainably transform communities, including academic ones, in ways that matter.
A Renewed Commitment to Our Community Within and Beyond Campus Walls
Launched in 2008 as a virtual organization to support regional and statewide economic and community engagement, the scope of activities and responsibilities of ICEE was subsumed within the Community Engagement Initiative. The 18-month visioning and planning process for excellence in community engagement was informed by a 30-person, cross-constituent advisory committee, led by the special assistant for community engagement, Emily Janke, Ph.D. For more information about UNCG’s history of engagement, please visit the History page.
Relationship to Other Offices and Units on Campus
ICEE was established in the Office of Research and Engagement in recognition of the important and essential interconnections between scholarship (which includes research, creative activity, teaching, and service), and economic, cultural, and community engagement. Serving as a central communication hub about community engagement activities, relationships, resources, scholarship, best practices, and outcomes, ICEE works with academic, student affairs, and administrative offices campus-wide to deepen, to make more pervasive, and to integrate community engagement into core academic work and systems for the purpose of advancing strategic institutional and community missions and goals.
Our research agenda is continually being informed and shaped by our practice, scholarship, and relationships; it is not fixed. At present, our work is broadly encompassed by the following two areas of praxis.
Community-Higher Education Partnerships
- Interpersonal, Intergroup, and Intra-organizational, and Cross-sector Partnerships
- Partnership Identity Development Within Teams
- Tensions, Conflict, and Healing
Leading Community Engagement Into the Future
- Defining Community Engagement in University Work
- Recognizing and Rewarding the Mosaic of Faculty Talents and Community Engagement
- Strategic Planning for Community Engagement within Higher Education Institutions & Associations
- Tracking and Measuring Institutional Landscapes of Community Engagement
- Institutional Identity, Image, and Communication Management
- Community-Engaged Pedagogy and Methodology
- Future Directions of Service-Learning and Community Engagement and Publicly Engaged Scholarship
The support we provide leverages our research and responds to the stated interests of both university and external communities as they relate to community engagement. We provide an array of services and opportunities to connect people and resources; track who is doing what, where, with whom, and to what ends; build the capacities of individuals and groups, and inspire high quality, community engagement activities.
A user-friendly point of entry to UNCG for local community members and organizations. The Referral Desk is also available to members of UNCG who are interested in working with the community or connecting with faculty in other disciplines as part of their teaching or research.
A portal to UNCG resources, events, and community networks to inspire, support, and assist in directing community colleagues as well as UNCG members to various assets for community engagement on- and off-campus, in and out of the classroom.
An annual series of conversations facilitated by international to local practitioner-scholars on how community-university engagement advances key institutional and regional strategies and goals.
An offering of bespoke consultations, professional development workshops, and an online collection of articles, journals, and tools to guide and connect UNCG members to national resources on community engagement, including a collection of resources that support the operationalization of community-engaged scholarship in promotion and tenure dossiers and reviews.
A three-year grant program that supports teams of faculty, staff, and community partners who seek to build the capacity of their members and structures so that community-engaged initiatives move from individual efforts to collective action and commitments.
UNCG faculty host learning communities focused on a variety of community engagement topics. The learning communities are open to faculty, staff, administrators, students, and community members.
A university-wide process of tracking UNCG’s connections to and collaborations with external communities by embedding into existing—and where necessary, new—systems for measuring and assessing the broad range of community-engaged activities, programs, and initiatives. This leads to improvements in programs, curricula, partnerships, and results, all of which benefits UNCG and broader communities.
A comprehensive plan of how ICEE manages communications. This plan discusses communication avenues, analytics, and our communications philosophy.