Saturday, January 20, 2007

University-Community Partnerships. ALATKT. No. 430.

At the website, A Librarian at Every Table, and this blog which identifies community roles in which librarians need to become involved, it has been emphasized over the years that librarians should connect with the the scholarship of engagement and the service learning movement.
For more on the importance of service learning and librarianship see: “Service Learning and LIS Education” (Elaine Yontz & Kathleen de la Peña McCook) Journal of Education for Library and Information Science 44(Winter 2003): 58-68.

This upcoming conference provides an opportunity for librarians in higher education to demonstrate work with community partners.

The Community Calls Forth the University

The Fourth Annual University-Community Partnership Conference. July 18-20, 2007.

Proposals Due: March 9, 2007
How do communities define engagement with institutions of higher education? Last year, participants of the University-Community Partnership Conference addressed the challenge of engagement as an imperative of the higher education mission. The 2007 event seeks to extend this conversation by exploring the perspective of community partners in the engaged partnership process. What does it mean for communities to choose engagement with higher education? And what are the implications when communities call forth their universities?

Our Keynote Speaker, Alice Lovelace, is considered one of Atlanta's premiere poets. She received her Master's degree in Conflict Resolution from Antioch University and she is a performance poet, playwright, essayist, arts-in-education specialist, and community consultant. She is also currently the 2007 US Social Forum National Organizer. Lovelace's presentation will be followed by facilitated discussion through Story Circles designed to draw forth participants' stories, memories, and reflections on the meaning of authentic engagement.

Plenary speaker Nadinne Cruz, internationally respected speaker, author, and education consultant and former Director of the Haas Center for Public Service, will provide further exploration of the conference theme by sharing the compelling outcomes of the Community Voices project, which she played a key role in facilitating. Throughout our time together, the conference will offer a rich combination of practical and interactive workshops, case studies, best practice presentations, and a Community Partners Resource Fair, all of which will provide participants with multiple learning opportunities to launch their own partnership efforts and to examine critical issues and challenges that are foundational to partnership development and sustenance.

You are invited to listen, respond, lead.

We are soliciting proposals that outline dynamic 45, 60 or 75-minute presentations that are interactive, applied, and lead participants to a concrete outcome. Preference is given to team presentations that include both community and university stakeholders. Specifically, we are interested in the following topical areas:

1. Explore the Mechanics of Building Partnerships. These sessions follow a workshop format that is interactive. Topics may include negotiating objectives that bridge university and community interests; developing memorandums of agreement; sharing risk and other legal matters related to partnership development; clarifying roles and responsibilities;leveraging institutional support; or measuring success. You may specify a participation limit for a Mechanics Workshop.

2. Demonstrate Best Practices in University-Community Partnerships.

Best practices presentations give in-depth descriptions of working partnerships that have already achieved positive results in their communities, and address how the partnership met and overcame challenges on the road to success.

3. Engaged Scholarship. These presentations demonstrate research and teaching initiatives that are substantively rooted in the work of the community and build on community assets.It is expected that 60 and 75 minute presentations will build in a significant amount of time for discussion and question / answer.

To Propose a Workshop, Presentation, or Poster:

1. Complete the cover page. Go to to download the Call for Presenters.
2. Write a one-page description of approximately 300 words of the proposed workshop or presentation. Please describe both the content of the session, as well as the format of delivery. Consider the following questions when writing your description: What is your inquiry or theory of change for this project? What community expertise does your partnership leverage? What community need is addressed? How do you demonstrate impact? How far are you in the process with this partnership?
3. Include a one sentence description of all session presenters that may be included in the conference program.
4. Send five paper copies or an electronic copy of the proposal to:

Michele James-Deramo
Conference Planning Committee Chair
Virginia Tech Service-Learning Center
202 Major Williams (0168)
Blacksburg, VA 24061


Call Announced: January 3rd, 2007

Proposals Due: March 9th, 2007

Selections Made By: April 6th, 2007

Presenters Notified By: April 13th, 2007

For questions, contact Michele James-Deramo at 540/231-6947.


2006 Conference.

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