Springfield, like many small cities in Massachusetts, faces many challenges. A significant number of these challenges result from high rates of poverty among the city’s residents and inequitable access to resources. Having the Springfield Center as a portal into UMass Amherst, a top-ranked research university, provides abundant opportunity. Students and faculty, in conjunction with UMass Amherst and its government and private industry partners, are able to engage in potentially game-changing research. Current areas of study include health care, human development, counseling, addiction, eye-tracking, and language development. Local residents are often compensated for their participation in these research studies. UMass students and community members can take pride in the impact these research studies can and do have on social and health needs in greater Springfield and beyond.