Indiana Campus Compact Grants More Than $20,000 To Community Engagement Cohort in Indiana

(INDIANAPOLIS) – Indiana Campus Compact, a partnership of higher education institutions that prepares college students to advance the public good, awarded $20,200 to five faculty members from three institutions in Indiana. Dr. Kiesha Warren-Gordon from Ball State University will serve as Senior Fellow, and Dr. Adam Kuban from Ball State University, Dr. Susan Crisafulli from Franklin College, and Drs. Cristina Santamaría Graff and Jessica Lee from IUPUI were chosen for the 2020-2021 class of Indiana Campus Compact Faculty Fellows.

Along with mentoring the Faculty Fellows class and providing leadership as they collaborate on a group research project, Dr. Warren-Gordon will work with her students at Ball State University on an individual project, Better Together. She is continuing her long-time collaboration with the Whitley neighborhood and leaders from the Whitely Community Council, President Frank Scott and Executive Director Ken Hudson. Each year, the Better Together project will focus on a different community-identified topic that will be addressed through the process of listening to and learning from community members and agencies. This year’s focus is on bettering community dialogue between the Whitely community writ large and the Police department.

Dr. Kuban’s individual project entails working with his students at Ball State University to create a documentary which will chronicle the effort to build collegiate men’s volleyball teams at six historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) in the Southern Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SIAC). The film’s intent is to engage potential donors in this national, nonprofit organization, attract new members to the volleyball community, and appeal to minority youth who may be considering participation in the sport.

Dr. Crisafulli’s individual project’s focus is the communications consulting course she created in which senior Franklin College English and creative writing majors will consult with local nonprofit organizations to understand their needs and create high-quality communication materials to help the organizations pursue their mission. The students will be working with Johnson County nonprofits Michelle’s Little Free Pantry, a local food pantry and community garden, and Bridges Alliance of Johnson County. Both organizations are focused on issues of food insecurity and systemic poverty. The students in Dr. Crisafulli’s class are not only learning about how to create high-quality communication materials, but also about some of the root causes of their community’s most pressing challenges.

Dr. Santamaría Graff’s individual project is to develop an online repository of family-centered lesson plans that will be co-created by pre-service teachers in the IUPUI School of Education Elementary Education Program and the families of children with learning and developmental disabilities in the Family as Faculty program. The project pairs families with students from Dr. Santamaría Graff’s special education methods course to create content and inform instructional choices for generating online-learning lesson plans. The families will drive the content as it is developed by the students. Once created, it will be uploaded to an accessible, free, and publicly available online platform.

Dr. Lee’s individual project is to build new community engagement experiences into graduate-level social work courses that allow for community-engaged learning components for her students at IUPUI. She is collaborating with Burmese American Community Institute (BACI) and Exodus Refugee, to develop deeper partnerships and to provide professional service. As part of this collaborative project, Dr. Lee’s students will partner with Exodus and BACI to carry out program evaluations and asset-based needs assessments, and at the same time gain skills in thinking globally while acting locally. Dr. Lee herself will then conduct more in-depth program evaluations and participatory research projects in collaboration with the BACI and Exodus staff.

In addition to their individual projects, the Fellows spend a year focused on a collaborative research project to further the field of community engagement. Under the direction of Senior Fellow, Dr. Warren-Gordon, and Laura Weaver, Indiana Campus Compact’s Director of Professional Development and Engaged Learning, the Fellows are exploring ways to operationalize the four tenets of critical service learning.

About Indiana Campus Compact

Indiana Campus Compact (ICC) is a partnership of Indiana’s public, private, and community college higher education institutions focused on advocating, implementing, and improving service engagement so that students graduate as well-informed, engaged, and productive members of society who are fully enabled to provide leadership and service that advances the public good in their communities. Indiana Campus Compact is an affiliate of National Campus Compact, headquartered in Boston, Massachusetts.