Gerber on Panel Discussing 'The Engaged Campus'

April 16, 2013

A panel discussion on “The Engaged Campus: Giving Back to the Commonwealth and Beyond” will be presented Friday, April 26, from 3-4:30 p.m. in W-32 Machmer Hall as part of this year’s Founders Week celebration.
Organized by the UMass Public Engagement Project (PEP), the panel will include Dan Gerber, associate dean for Academic Affairs in the School of Public Health and Health Sciences and chair of the Faculty Senate’s Public Service and Outreach Council; Marla Michel, director of Community Engagement and the Scibelli Enterprise Center in Springfield; John Reiff, director of the Office of Civic Engagement and Service-Learning; Senate Majority Leader Stan Rosenberg, and Psychology professor Linda Tropp, who helped to establish the Public Engagement Project. Distinguished Professor Naomi Gerstel of the Sociology Department, amember of PEP, will moderate.

According to Gerstel, who is also a member of the Public Engagement Project, “This panel is such an appropriate event for this year’s Founders Week celebration. Public service was central to UMass’ mission when it was founded as a land grant university 150 years ago, and it has remained a critical part of our collective endeavors ever since.”

In 2008, UMass Amherst was recognized as a Community Engaged Campus by the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.

“The level of engagement on our campus is extensive and varied,” according to M.V. Lee Badgett, a professor of Economics who helped to found the Public Engagement Project. “Students serve our communities in incredible numbers, engaging in high-impact learning while advancing the cause of social justice. Research by UMass faculty has contributed to everything from safer, healthier foods in our supermarkets to effective strategies for mitigating climate change.”

Gerstel notes: “I think alumni returning to campus will be especially interested in hearing what our panelists have to say. Community engagement at UMass is yet one more reason for them to take pride in their alma mater.”

The panel presentation is free and open to the public, and light refreshments will be served.