In January of 2011, USF Tampa was awarded the Curricular Engagement elective classification by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching. The successful application was prepared by the Office of Community Engagement’s founding Director, Dr. Susan Greenbaum, and her staff during summer 2010. USF had already received Carnegie’s Outreach and Partnership classification in 2006, meaning that USF has now earned both of Carnegie’s Community Engagement elective classifications.
Carnegie defines curricular engagement as “teaching, learning and scholarship [that] engages faculty, students, and community in mutually beneficial and respectful collaboration” and whose “interactions address community-identified needs, deepen students’ civic and academic learning, enhance community well-being, and enrich the scholarship of the institution.” Outreach is “the application and provision of institutional resources for community use with benefits to both campus and community,” and partnerships are “collaborative interactions with community and related scholarship for the mutually beneficial exchange, exploration, and application of knowledge, information, and resources” (source: Carnegie Foundation).
USF was admitted to the 2010 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll for engaging its students, faculty and staff in meaningful service that achieves measurable results in the community. The Honor Roll recognizes institutions of higher education that support exemplary community service programs and raises the visibility of best practices in campus-community partnerships.
The Corporation for National and Community Service oversees the Honor Roll in collaboration with the U.S. Departments of Education and Housing and Urban Development, Campus Compact, and the American Council on Education. Honorees are chosen based on a series of selection factors, including the scope and innovation of service projects, the extent to which service-learning is embedded in the curriculum, the school’s commitment to long-term campus-community partnerships, and measurable community outcomes as a result of service.
The OCE and the Center for Leadership & Civic Engagement worked together on compiling information and submitting USF’s application.
The University of South Florida’s commitment to community service is embodied in its mission statement and institutional values. As stated in its mission, “USF is dedicated to excellence in embracing innovation, and supporting scholarly and artistic engagement to build a community of learners together with significant and sustainable university-community partnerships and collaborations.”
USF values “community engagement and public service based on the highest standards of discovery, creativity and intellectual attainment,” together with excellence in teaching, learning, scholarship, and research.
Goal III of USF’s Strategic Plan for 2007-2012 is devoted entirely to community engagement and service; among the specific objectives is to “encourage and reward faculty effort in community engagement” and “encourage and reward student engagement in the community.” At USF, the OCE and the Center for Civic Leadership & Engagement are tasked with carrying out these objectives.
USF was awarded the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2008, and in 2007 earned the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction.