Community Engagement Faculty Institute

Taking Education Beyond the Walls of the Classroom

CEFI 2022: Tentatively Scheduled for June 1-3, 2022

The Center for Social Concerns offers the Community Engagement Faculty Institute (CEFI) for all who want to explore or deepen their knowledge, skills, and passion for community-engaged teaching, learning, and research. This dynamic Community Engagement Faculty Institute is imbued with engaged learning, mixing lectures by faculty and community experts on the theory and practice of community-university partnerships with immersion into the South Bend community to learn with community partners.

Due to COVID, CEFI 2022 might have restrictions on participation. We will know more in late spring 2022, but we expect that Notre Dame faculty, staff, and graduate students will be able to attend. We will announce what we know as soon as we know it..

How does CEFI connect faculty with partners at the University and the South Bend community? Listen to Grant Mudge, Ryan Producing Artistic Director of the Notre Dame Shakespeare Festival, describe his experiences.

CEFI 2021:Childhood Adversity and Solidarity in South Bend Description

CEFI 2021 focused its conversations, readings, and site visits on the theme of “Childhood Adversity and Solidarity in South Bend.” We explored what it means to work towards a trauma-informed approach to academic community engagement. South Bend has a poverty rate of about 24% and a child poverty rate above 30%. Those high rates indicate a high level of stress for adults and children alike. In CEFI, we considered in particular how to understand and respond to adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) in solidarity with the many local organizations that seek to address unjust adverse community environments. 

Participants received the book The Deepest Well: Healing the Long-term Effects of Childhood Adversity by Dr. Nadine Burke Harris, Surgeon General of California, to read as a foundation. We engaged additional readings and viewings, including the readings recommended by Provost Miranda’s “Moment to See, Courage to Act” faculty group conversations. This institute sought to extend our knowledge to see and ability to act in solidarity with our community partners.

Agenda and Objectives

See the 2020 agenda to get a sense of presentations, activities, and learning objectives. Hear past participants testify to the power and inspiration of this unique learning experience. 


CEFI is interdisciplinary and inclusive. All Notre Dame faculty, graduate students, and Community-Engaged Learning Coordinators are welcome to apply. We seek a diverse cohort willing to join their perspective and talents with those of community leaders who work to advance health and healing in all domains of civic life. Participants at all levels of experience with community engagement are welcome. Due to the popularity of the event, registration is generally competitive. Participants selected to attend are therefore asked to reserve the full time of our institute to be an active member of this learning community. We will follow the most current COVID-19 protocols to keep participants, presenters, and community hosts safe. 
Participants who would like to be on the program may propose a talk in the application. Lunch will be provided each day. Notre Dame employees who participate are given special consideration when applying for Social Concerns Community Impact Grants to support community-engaged research, teaching, and learning at the University of Notre Dame. Eligibility does not extend to participants from other universities or organizations. 

Registration Fee

No fee for Notre Dame faculty, staff, and graduate students, or local St. Joseph County community partners. 


If you have questions or want more information, contact Connie Snyder Mick at




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Upcoming Events

October 2021

Application Close | ISSLP 2022
Monday, October 25, 2021 - 12:00am to 11:45pm
Information Session | SSLP 2022
Tuesday, October 26, 2021 - 7:00pm
Postgraduate Service Lunch | Alliance for Catholic Education
Friday, October 29, 2021 - 11:30am to 1:30pm

November 2021

Information Session | SSLP 2022
Tuesday, November 2, 2021 - 7:00pm
Getting Something to Eat in Jackson
Tuesday, November 2, 2021 - 7:00pm
Mini Postgraduate Service Fair
Friday, November 5, 2021 - 1:00pm to 3:00pm
Labor Café First Friday
Friday, November 5, 2021 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm
Taste of PATH
Tuesday, November 9, 2021 - 7:30pm
Information Session | Poverty Studies Interdisciplinary Minor (PSIM)
Thursday, November 11, 2021 - 8:00pm to 8:30pm
Dignity and Justice Workshop
Friday, November 12, 2021 - 10:00am to 1:00pm
Catholic Social Tradition (CST) Minor Brunch
Sunday, November 14, 2021 - 11:30am
Higgins Film CLASSics | Blue Collar (1978)
Sunday, November 14, 2021 - 3:00pm
Virtues & Vocations Presents Howard Gardner: What is Good Work?
Monday, November 29, 2021 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm

December 2021

Signs of the Times Brown Bag Lunch Series | Housing
Friday, December 3, 2021 - 12:00pm
Labor Café First Friday
Friday, December 3, 2021 - 5:00pm to 6:00pm