The University of Massachusetts Amherst

Why Public Engagement?

As citizens and as scholars, we have an interest in today’s debates about public policy, conversations about the state of the world, and imagining a different future. Read more about the Public Engagement Projects' Mission and Vision

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Erin Baker, 2017 PEP Fellow, and Matthew Lackner, 2018 PEP Fellow, write about the future of offshore wind turbines in the U.S. following the Biden administration’s announced goal to accelerate the review process and provide more funding for projects

Erin Baker, 2017 PEP Fellow, and Matthew Lackner, 2018 PEP Fellow, write about the future of offshore wind turbines in the U.S. following the Biden administration’s announced goal to accelerate the review process and provide more funding for projects. They write, “Every year of delay for a large-scale wind farm costs the U.S. hundreds of millions of dollars in climate benefits.” Baker and Lackner lead the Wind Energy Center at UMass Amherst. Read more at The Conversation.

Amy Schalet, PEP Steering Committee Member and UMass ADVANCE Honors Faculty, was recently awarded the 2021 ADVANCE Peer Mentoring Award

Amy Schalet, PEP Steering Committee Member and UMass ADVANCE Honors Faculty, was recently awarded the 2021 ADVANCE Peer Mentoring Award. In relation to Schalet's work on co-creating the Public Engagement Project at UMass Amherst, Provost John McCarthy said, "Dr. Schalet has broadened the careers of many of our colleagues, increased the reach of their work, and created vital infrastructure." Read more about the 2021 ADVANCE Peer Mentoring Awards

M.V. Lee Badgett, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article exploring the economic impacts the COVID pandemic has had on the LGBTQ community

M.V. Lee Badgett, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article exploring the economic impacts the COVID pandemic has had on the LGBTQ community. “The pandemic just kind of dug in and found all of the inequalities and just turned that into this whole other kind of nightmare for people,” she said. “It is bleak. I mean, there's really no way around that.” Read more at NBC NewsMSN.com, and Yahoo!News

Miliann Kang, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article about how last week’s shootings in Atlanta illuminate the vulnerability of Asian women in the American workplace

Miliann Kang, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article about how last week’s shootings in Atlanta illuminate the vulnerability of Asian women in the American workplace. She says front-line service work comes with built-in risks because people in those positions “absorb any complaints or any ill will.” Read more at the Marketplace

Miliann Kang, PEP Steering Committee Member, writes that the victims of last week's Atlanta shootings should be remembered in full, not just in relation to their alleged killer’s motivation

Miliann Kang, PEP Steering Committee Member, writes that the victims of last week's Atlanta shootings should be remembered in full, not just in relation to their alleged killer’s motivation. She says, “By invoking his ‘sexual addiction’, Robert Aaron Long is getting the last word, not just on his murderous rampage in Atlanta, but on framing the victims, their work and his crime as one of passion, not hate.” Read more at Ms. Magazine

Amy Schalet, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article about the risks and benefits of college faculty including their social media in a resume or CV

Amy Schalet, PEP Steering Committee Member, is quoted in an article about the risks and benefits of college faculty including their social media in a resume or CV. She says, “Social media can be a valuable activity and there's a greater desire for faculty in many disciplines to share their knowledge with members of society who would benefit most from it.” Read more at Higher Ed Jobs

Elizabeth Sharrow, 2020 PEP Fellow, is quoted in an article about new laws requiring physical examinations to confirm gender in girls competing in athletics

Elizabeth Sharrow, 2020 PEP Fellow, is quoted in an article about new laws requiring physical examinations to confirm gender in girls competing in athletics. She says, “We should be extremely skeptical and concerned about the notion that any athletes have to testify with their bodies in those ways in order for sports to be kept as a competitively ‘fair’ space.” Read more at Glamour

Joya Misra, 2021 PEP Fellow, and colleagues write about ways colleges and universities could formalize programs to mentor faculty

Joya Misra, 2021 PEP Fellow, and colleagues write about ways colleges and universities could formalize programs to mentor faculty. Misra explains, “Through developing clear mentoring plans that address the needs of their faculty members, institutional and departmental leaders can foster greater inclusivity, resilience and success among their colleagues.” Read more at Inside Higher Ed.

Linda Tropp, PEP Co-Director, comments in an article about the value of expanding friend groups to include people of different backgrounds, identities or life experiences

Linda Tropp, PEP Co-Director, comments in an article about the value of expanding friend groups to include people of different backgrounds, identities or life experiences. Tropp says, “When we encounter people who are different from us, we may feel unsure about how to act, or about how we or our intentions will be perceived, and that can make us feel uncomfortable.” Read more at the HuffPost.

Elizabeth Sharrow, 2020 PEP Fellow, is quoted in an article that looks at efforts by state governments across the country to ban transgender girls and women from participating in scholastic and collegiate sports with cisgender athletes

Elizabeth Sharrow, 2020 PEP Fellow, is quoted in an article that looks at efforts by state governments across the country to ban transgender girls and women from participating in scholastic and collegiate sports with cisgender athletes. “People have a lot of feelings about the sports competition,” she says. “There’s a lot of emotion tied up in their memories of participating as a youth. Maybe it’s their memories of watching their children participate. Maybe it’s their memories of being spectators.” Read more at Sports Illustrated

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In appreciation of their generous support, the UMass Public Engagement Project would like to thank the Office of the ProvostUniversity Relations, and the Colleges of Natural SciencesSocial and Behavioral Sciences Humanities and Fine ArtsEngineeringPublic Health and Health Sciences, and Education.  The UMass Public Engagement Project also recognizes and appreciates in-kind contributions and collaborations with the Center for Research on Families and the Institute for Social Science Research