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Wednesday, October 30, 2019

New investments in research, creative activity, and engaged scholarship

CLA has developed a new Research Services website that is a one-stop-shop for all collegiate research development support and research support services. We are also rolling out a new web-based program called InfoReady Review to assist with managing various aspects of funding and leaves. And in a significant new investment, we are hiring a new Research Development Coordinator who will expand our capacity to assist faculty and students across the college. These moves and others, such as our first-at-the-U move into fully-funded sabbaticals, are among the latest ways we are continuing the relentless pursuit of research and creative excellence called for in the CLA Roadmap.

Liberal Arts Engagement Hub Launch

The Liberal Arts Engagement Hub has launched with five pilot Hub Residencies. The Hub was another initiative imagined by the faculty, staff, and student Roadmap goal team focused on public and community engagement. Among the funded projects will be efforts to build stronger University relationships with Twin Cities public middle schools and high schools through public humanities projects, and to bring together recent and long-established ethnic, national, and religious communities in the Twin Cities to facilitate constructive conversations. During spring semester 2020, CLA faculty, staff, and students, and community members will have another opportunity to apply for a Hub residency for the 2020-21 academic year. Stay tuned for more information about the application process.

Advancing the Civic Readiness Initiative

Large majorities of Republicans and Democrats Say it is Very Important for the Other Side to Compromise.” No, that’s not a headline from The Onion. The survey, conducted by Pew Research, simply provides another data point concerning the difficulties around dialogue, discussion, and discourse in the United States. For me, these trends put into ever-clearer focus our vital work as a college.

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Celebrating 50 years of the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Program

(Remarks made at the MLK Program's Inaugural Alumni Networking Event, October 19, 2019)

Thank you for having me and thank you all for joining us this evening for the Reverend Doctor Martin Luther King, Jr. Program’s inaugural Alumni Networking Social. It’s wonderful to have you back on campus, whether you graduated a few years ago or a few decades ago.

It’s a great pleasure to be here to honor the accomplishments and legacy of the MLK program and to look forward to its future. Before I continue, I’d like to thank the staff of the MLK program for their work in organizing tonight’s event. I’d also like to thank Ascan Koerner, CLA’s Associate Dean for Undergraduate Education, and Steve Davis, Director of Affinity Engagement at the University of Minnesota Alumni Association, for their support of this event.

For 50 years, the MLK Program has helped students transform their lives. It has helped them find and define their passions, their voices, and their goals. And it has helped create a more equitable campus through its leadership around the issues of inclusion, access, and the equity gap.