Crops for Cash
CURRENTS Article In 2016, Montana State University launched the "Bushels for Bobcats" program, accepting gifts of grains and crops from local farmers in lieu of cash.
What’s the Idea?
CURRENTS Article Community colleges can promote their campuses without a big advertising budget by recruiting and educating community ambassadors. Each fall, Craven Community College Foundation in North Carolina invites 15 to 20 community members to join its VIP Ambassador Program. During four half-day sessions between September and December, the ambassadors tour Craven's two campuses and speak with students, faculty, and administrators about the college's goals, funding, and programs. Ambassadors promote Craven in their respective circles, some even hosting College 101 events.
Respect Between Rivals
CURRENTS Article In the days leading up to their 100th football matchup in November 2015, Gilman and McDonogh schools in Maryland put their rivalries aside to help the Baltimore area through service projects.
By the Numbers: Meet MoMu
CURRENTS Article The University of Iowa's Mobile Museum, aka MoMu, debuted in April 2014 to bring the institution's research to people across the state.
Laughter Is the Best Marketing
CURRENTS Article Because advancement professionals are in the business of attracting people to their organizations, they should consider using humor as a communications and marketing tactic.
The Other Senior Class
CURRENTS Article Lifelong learners are advancement professionals' dream supporters: They're loyal to the institution, they have plenty of free time, and they're passionate about education and giving back to society. They could be untapped sources for volunteering, leading, or fundraising.
A School of Their Own
CURRENTS Article In 2000, an American-style independent school in Colombia opened a day care for its impoverished neighbors as a way to get students involved and meet community needs. When the time came for the two- and three-year-olds to move on, the day care was expanded into a primary school. Then an elementary school. Then a high school, which will graduate its first class this November.
Outlook: Rhetoric and Priorities
CURRENTS Article The writer, an employee of Syracuse University, argues that all higher education institutions need to go to the mat to make college more affordable and provide all students with an appropriately broad and deep liberal arts education that at the same time prepares them to take on the complex challenges of the world.
Michigan State of Mind
CURRENTS Article This article looks at the efforts of the Michigan Colleges Foundation, a collective of 14 of the state's small independent colleges and universities, to encourage students to stay in Michigan after graduation by educating them about the quality of life and employment opportunities in three of the state's largest metropolitan areas. After conducting market research and surveying college students, MCF plans a multiplatform marketing campaign geared to seniors.
CURRENTS Article In this article, Caroline E. Mayer reports on the increase in payments in lieu of taxes (PILOTs) being requested of colleges and universities in light of the budget shortfalls that municipalities are facing as a result of the recession. It explores successful PILOT agreements as well as unsuccessful attempts by local leaders to push for these payments and highlights institutional efforts to better communicate the value and benefits they bring to their community.
CURRENTS Article A recent CASE survey suggests that community relations efforts at both private and public institutions are somewhat different but that professionals working on both sides can learn from each other. Respondents from public institutions were quick to connect their work with local and state government relations. Conversely, professionals at private institutions were especially concerned about the fundraising and development programs of the school or university. The survey also suggests that both types need to communicate better with their own institutions about their work.
CURRENTS Article Independent schools continue a historical mandate to serve the greater good by connecting with their communities.
Closing Remarks: Connecting the Dots
CURRENTS Article A university president discusses the challenges and benefits of regional stewardship.
CURRENTS Article Every campus faces town-gown issues at one time or another.This article looks at the ways in which four institutions handled potential problems and improved communications with their communities.
It Takes a Community
CURRENTS Article Although an independent school's strongest constituents may live nearby, activities that are unpopular in the neighborhood can still strain relations. The author looks at how to maintain good feelings within the community.
Postcard from Brussels
CURRENTS Article At the International School of Brussels, imagining the possibilities has led to action to educate students, faculty, and the community about sustainability.
Advance Work: In the Zone
CURRENTS Article Pennsylvania was experiencing a brain drain--college graduates were leaving the state in high numbers. A state initiative is helping cities and counties collaborate with the higher education institutions to keep students in the state when they become alumni.
CURRENTS Article Millions of dollars poured in to help restore campuses devastated by Hurricane Katrina and other Gulf Coast storms. This story is about what these colleges, universities, and independent schools did with the donations. In salavaging their campus community, they also found a higher purpose in helping the larger communities in which they reside.
Leader of the Pack
CURRENTS Article This article looks at a few U.S. colleges and universities that have built retirement communities on their campuses. It remains to be seen if bequests or alumni donations will increase due to these communities, but at the very least retirees add a whole new element to campus life.
CURRENTS Article Campus community relations efforts have changed from one-way communications to a long-term dialogue and vision that requires the use of new communication outlets and skills. The new community relations is a mixed bag of voluntarism, service-learning, scholarship, and economic development. This article explores the motives behind today’s community relations efforts, which include a rethinking of the role of higher education and its civic responsibility, the curricular need to include experiential learning to enhance student career readiness, and fierce competition for prospective students and faculty.
Weathering the Storm
CURRENTS Article Hurricane Katrina and a subsequent flood dealt areas of the Gulf Coast a punishing blow—more than 1,000 people died, some 900,000 people were displaced, and countless neighborhoods, homes, and businesses were destroyed. Nearly three dozen colleges and universities and dozens of independent schools sustained damage—some of it severe. This article reports on the effects of the hurricane on Gulf Coast institutions, some campus-based relief efforts, and other elements of the storm’s aftermath.
Good Neighbor Policy
CURRENTS Article As Hurricanes Katrina and then Rita began to dominate the news, the long-scheduled theme of community relations for the October 2005 CURRENTS gained immediacy. Few examples of the interdependent relationship between campuses and communities are as powerful or as democratic as natural disasters. Yet the bonds between campuses and communities are equally powerful; both contribute to and are fueled by the same momentum to rebuild and recover.
AdvanceWork: Mission Accomplished
CURRENTS Article For 30 days in January and February 2005, Seattle University fulfilled its service and social-justice mission by hosting the residents of Tent City 3, a local homeless encampment. This article describes how SU got involved in local, national, and international efforts to bring attention to homelessness and how Tent City’s presence on campus influenced constituents’ perceptions of the university and its place in the community.
CURRENTS Article Campus communicators can find themselves enmeshed in community debates about the effect of their institution on local resources and quality of life. Problems are more readily resolvable when an institution builds and maintains strong community relationships, takes local concerns seriously, communicates freely, and tends to internal as well as external constituencies.
AdvanceWork: Spinning Straw into Gold
CURRENTS Article A North Carolina community college successfully turned an abandoned textile mill into classroom, office, and community space. Local residents contributed generously to the $1.8-million campaign that made the conversion possible, and by restoring a site with significance to many in the area, the institution built stronger community relations.
Spreading the Good Word
CURRENTS Article Some campuses use special publications to highlight their role in the community and regional economy. The article profiles outreach publications from Ohio University; Clark University; University of California, San Francisco; and American University.
CURRENTS Article A college addresses strained community relations through intensive research, extensive communication and organizational change.