The University of Iowa

Carnegie Seal
The University of Iowa is proud to have been selected to receive the 2015 Community Engagement Classification from the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

The Carnegie Community Engagement Classification, awarded every five years, is the highest standard of recognition for community engagement efforts at institutions of higher education.  Colleges and universities apply for the classification by submitting extensive documentation that describes the nature and extent of their engagement activities and demonstrates strong institutional commitment to community engagement.

The University of Iowa’s decision to pursue the classification emerged out of the work of the 2009 UI Strategic Planning Task Force on Public Outreach and Civic Engagement, which was followed by the creation of the Provost’s Advisory Committee on Publicly Engaged Arts, Research, and Scholarship.  The latter committee was charged with beginning to operationalize an “engagement roadmap” for the university.  During its first year, one of that committee’s most important efforts was to explore the possibility of pursuing the elective Community Engagement Classification.  The result of that work was a strong recommendation that the university should pursue the classification, and in January 2013 the university leadership committed to do so.

Professor Colin Gordon of the Department of History in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences took on responsibility for preparing the application, which was to be submitted in April 2014.  When Professor Linda Snetselaar took on the new role of associate provost for outreach and engagement in spring 2013, she joined the leadership of this effort.  Many faculty and staff across campus worked very hard, in collaboration with Professor Gordon and Associate Provost Snetselaar, to prepare an application that accurately reflected the extraordinary range of work already being done by our faculty, staff, and students, as well as our commitment to greater emphasis on community engagement as a strategic priority for the university. 

In January 2015, the university learned that it had been selected to receive the designation.  This superb result—which is very much thanks to all those who worked with such dedication, over many months, to see it accomplished—is a welcome recognition of the tremendous achievements of the many faculty, staff, and students who have long pursued publicly engaged teaching, research, scholarship, and creative work.  Even more important, it identifies us as an institution that is committed to contributing to important community needs, and to helping our students be better citizens.  Our hope and expectation is that this achievement will not only raise the profile of the work that is ongoing, but also provide a catalyst to help us strengthen and create new partnerships with the communities we serve.

For information on using the Carnegie Classification seal on websites and promotional materials, please contact the Provost’s Office of Outreach and Engagement at