Community Engagement describes the collaboration between CU Denver and local, national, and global communities for the mutually beneficial exchange through partnerships and collaboration (adapted from Carnegie 2006). In all of our work, we emphasize university-community partnerships that are collaborative, participatory, empowering, systemic, and transformative. Through the Student Life & Campus Community, we offer a variety of programs that get students involved in communities to explore social, cultural, and environmental issues while also learning about themselves and their role in a global community.
Our mission is to develop CU Denver students into advocates of sustainable change through service and collaboration with communities to address social, cultural, and environmental injustices.
Community engagement is approached from a justice-based and asset-based perspective.
Based on this approach the following principles guide engagement:
- Experiential & Reflective Learning
- Collaborative & Reciprocal Relationships
- Diversity, Equity, & Inclusion
- Student Empowerment
- Sustainable Change
Benefits of Engaging in Our Community
- Meet the unmet needs of one’s own community.
- Students bridge the knowledge they receive in classrooms with hands-on everyday experiences within the community.
- Students have a meaningful and enjoyable experience while meeting and networking with others who share the same values.
- Gain experience with relevant social issues impacting their community.
- Engage in leadership development.
- Explore and get exposure to possible future careers and like-minded professional organizations.
- Witness firsthand the positive impact they have on their community.
- Enhance your overall education and experience. Remember, potential employers are looking for the well-rounded individual who can make a positive impact in a variety of different settings.
“If you have come to help me, you are wasting your time. If you have come because your liberation is bound up with mine, then let us work together.”
Words used by Lilla Watson, Aboriginal elder, activist and educator from Queensland, Australia