The Office of University Outreach and Engagement facilitates university-wide efforts to create an ecosystem of engagement by supporting the engaged activities of faculty, staff, and students; fostering public access to university expertise and resources; and by advocating for exemplary engaged scholarship, nationally and internationally. In all of its work, UOE emphasizes university-community partnerships that are collaborative, participatory, empowering, systemic, transformative, and anchored in scholarship.
This scholarship focus is applied to a broad range of community-defined needs, with special focus on:
- Arts and cultural initiatives
- Children, youth, and families
- Community and economic development
- Health and wellbeing
- Human-technology interaction
- PreK-16 education
- Scholarship of engagement
- Service-learning and civic engagement
MSU has also assumed a leadership role with respect to national conversations about the scholarship of engagement—defining, measuring, and evaluating best practices.
We welcome an opportunity to talk with you about how you might become active in the outreach and engagement enterprise.
The Provost's Committee on University Outreach (1993) defined outreach as scholarship that cuts across teaching, research, and service. It involves generating, transmitting, applying, and preserving knowledge for the direct benefit of external audiences.
MSU advocates a scholarly model of outreach and engagement that involves the co-creation and application of knowledge, a relationship that increases both partners' capacity to address issues.
For more information on UOE's approach to scholarly engagement, please refer to the following resources:
- MSU seminal documents and reports
- Definitions of common types of community engaged scholarship
- Community-based Engagement Approaches
What University Outreach and Engagement does...
Serves the interests of communities
Bringing together community expertise and interests with the best of MSU research, UOE works to empower positive change through mutually beneficial partnerships.
Supports community-engaged scholarship
UOE facilitates networks of MSU faculty engaged with communities throughout Michigan to address complex issues that often require interdisciplinary collaboration. It also fosters community-based initiatives in cities like Detroit, Flint, and Lansing, organized to advance such priorities as regional economic development, sustainable food systems, early childhood development, education and learning, and community systems change.
Involves MSU students locally and globally
The Center for Service-Learning and Civic Engagement registers students in over 20,000 placements a year, engaging them with market research, communication planning, adult literacy tutoring, and other forms of community service.
Advocates for community engagement
UOE advances understanding about community-engaged scholarship in the academy and promotes policies and practices that encourage it, both at MSU and institutions across higher education.
Conducts research and evaluation
UOE-based research centers and collaboratives work with communities, organizations, and other universities to answer important questions, improve programs, conduct institutional research, develop successful initiatives, build capacity for evidence-based practice, and improve sustainability and funding potential.
Provides learning opportunities
UOE offers professional development programs focused on best practices in outreach and engagement.
Tells MSU's community engagement story
UOE showcases exemplary community-engaged scholarship through its publications and websites, and works with individual faculty to develop their own communication plans.
Promotes public access
UOE offers and supports resources that provide greater public access to the University and its faculty through:
- Educational programs for K-12 students like Gifted and Talented Education, the events and educational offerings of the MSU Museum and the Wharton Center for Performing Arts, and participation in the Michigan Science Olympiad State Tournament
- Public festivals, including the Great Lakes Folk Festival, the Summer Solstice Jazz Festival, and the MSU Science Festival
- Community-based hubs, such as the Center for Community and Economic Development in Lansing and the MSU Detroit Center and the MSU – Detroit Partnerships at YouthVille research facility in Michigan's largest city
- Catalog websites of programs and resources: