Faculty institute hosts largest cohort yet in its seventh year

By: Katie McCauley

July 11, 2018

Animated by the center’s yearlong focus of  “Living the Challenge of Peace,” the 2018 Center for Social Concerns Community Engagement Faculty Institute (CEFI) was held June 5–7. The institute also expanded upon the Office of the Provost's "Inclusive Excellence Conference: Becoming Beloved Community," held in May which explored research showing how diversity must be connected to community engagement work as the two efforts are mutually reinforcing. CEFI offered engagement with diverse community partners, social concerns, and ways of researching and teaching for the common good.

The faculty institute, now in its seventh year, brought together its largest cohort of 40 participants from Notre Dame as well as throughout the region and other states and countries.  

The three-day institute further explored topics related to diversity and community engagement through a keynote panel, workshops by faculty and experts from local organizations along with  site visits in the local community. Workshops focused on incarceration and justice, immigration and rights, and work and dignity.

The keynote panel was a discussion with Rev. Edward "Monk" Malloy, C.S.C., president emeritus, University of Notre Dame, Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Ind., and Steve Camilleri, executive director, Center for the Homeless, moderated by award-winning community-engaged scholar  Marisel Moreno Anderson, associate professor of Latino/a Literature. The panelists discussed enduring challenges the city of South Bend faces, particularly the issue of homelessness, and how University partnerships have worked to help solve these complex social problems.

“The panel was an academic discussion that represented practice and included voices from the University, the city, and the nonprofit sector in South Bend, so in many ways it represented the different kind of stakeholders that are present in community-based learning and research,” said Connie Snyder Mick, associate director of the Center for Social Concerns and director of the institute. “It looked at how partnerships start between the University and the community and how you find that shared sense of what makes up a beloved community.”

A new session hosted by the Near Northwest Neighborhood, Inc., paired community and faculty experts speaking on a range of public health issues, including mental health, lead poisoning, opioid addiction, and food access.

Participants found that integrating classroom teaching with lived experience creates a more impactful learning experience for their students. “The Community Engagement Faculty Institute exceeded my expectations,” commented Pamela Nolan Young, J.D., M.Ed., director for Academic Diversity and Inclusion at Notre Dame. “While I enjoyed the site visits and found the presentations informative, the big takeaway for me was the reciprocal relationship of our faculty and students and the South Bend Community.”

Faculty interested in considering how their teaching and research can help advocate for impact in local communities worldwide can contact Connie Mick.


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