spacer spacer

Public Service and Engagement

Public service and engagement have long been a core mission at Carolina. By tapping academic expertise, applying research, and creating vital partnerships, the University serves as a resource for communities both near and far.

This University-wide commitment has garnered national recognition. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching classifies UNC as a “community-engaged university”—a select designation that recognizes institutional commitment to curricular engagement, outreach, and partnerships. In 2009, UNC-Chapel Hill was named to the U.S. President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with Distinction.

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Active Living by Design

The Active Living by Design Program in the Gillings School of Global Public Health studies and promotes increased physical activity and healthy eating through community design. A large grant program funded by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation supports infrastructure and policy improvements and innovative communication strategies in cities nationwide. The Town of Chapel Hill is one of the funded communities. Local projects include safe walking routes to schools, a walking map of the downtown, and capital project recommendations in several mixed-use neighborhoods.  In 2009, Active Living launched Healthy Kids, Healthy Communities, a 5-year, $33 million national program funded by the Robert Wood Johnson FOundation.  THe primary goal is to reverse the country's childhood obesity epidemic by 2015.

Links:
Active Living by Design - http://www.activelivingbydesign.org/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

APPLES

APPLES stands for Assisting People in Planning Learning Experiences in Service. This program, the oldest student-led service-learning program in the country, brings together faculty, students, and the community to form service-learning partnerships. In 2010-2011, APPLES supported 110 service-learning courses in 37 departments. 2,410 students worked with more than 100+ community organizations to volunteer more than 84,350 hours.  Many service projects and courses relate directly to social, economic, and environmental sustainability.

Links:
APPLES - http://www.unc.edu/apples/index.html
Carolina Center for Public Service - http://www.unc.edu/cps/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Business Accelerator for Sustainable Entrepreneurship

Students meeting with BASEThe Business Accelerator for Sustainable Entrepreneurship (BASE) provides customized business development expertise to entrepreneurs building socially and environmentally sustainable enterprises. A program of the Center for Sustainable Enterprise in the Kenan-Flagler Business School, BASE is the first incubator in North Carolina to specifically support businesses pursuing the triple bottom line of social equity, ecological integrity, and financial profitability. BASE offers workshops and training programs, networking and funding opportunities, and pro bono business development resources.

Links:
Business Accelerator for Sustainable Entrepreneurship - http://www.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/cse/BASE/index.cfm

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Carolina Center for Public Service

The Carolina Center for Public Service promotes opportunities for students and faculty to provide public service that is responsive to the needs of North Carolina’s communities. The Public Service Scholars Program, started in 2003, recognizes students who graduate with at least 300 hours of service and complete specific service-learning courses. Since the program’s inception, more than 2,800 participating students have contributed 430,000 service hours. In 2011, UNC graduated 194 Public Service Scholars with an average of over 450 hours each--a total of more than 87,000 hours.  More than 2200 students at Carolina currently participate in the Public Service Scholars Program and they represent 92% of all majors..

The Faculty Engaged Scholars Program recognizes and provides financial support to faculty to support community engagement in a wide range of disciplines. A fellowship program supports selected faculty members with courses on obtaining funding, navigating disciplinary expectations while addressing community needs, and partnering with local communities.

Links:
Carolina Center for Public Service - http://www.unc.edu/cps/
Faculty Engaged Scholars Program - http://www.unc.edu/cps/faculty-engaged-scholars.php

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Campus Y

As the center for social justice and pluralism, the 1,500-member Campus Y is the largest student organization on campus. Members catalyze positive social change through service activities, advocacy initiatives, conferences, and events. Activities of the Campus Y are guided by committees that focus on specific issues.  These include Advocates for Human Rights, Carolina Microfinance Initiative, Extended Disaster Relief, and Hunger and Homelessness Outreach Project (HOPE), Nourish International, and Students Working in the Environment for Active Transformation.

Links:
Campus Y - http://campus-y.unc.edu/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Center for Sustainable Enterprise

The award-winning CSE Consulting, launched in 2004, leverages the expertise of Kenan-Flagler MBA students, staff, and faculty to offer world-class sustainability consulting services. Competitively selected students provide business-specific, actionable recommendations that address the triple bottom line of financial profitability, social equity, and ecological integrity. Services include social/environmental impact assessments; sustainability benchmarking; sustainability reporting; making the business case for sustainability; and sustainable business planning.  In spring 2011, the School of Social Work hosted a semester-long public engagement series on Creating Sustainable Enterprises.

The House that Kenan-Flagler Built is a four-year-old partnership between the business school and Habitat for Humanity Orange County. Students, staff, and faculty pitch in to raise half the cost and then work on the construction site to build a home for a local family. The energy-efficient homes are based on Advanced Energy designs.

Links:
Center for Sustainable Enterprise - http://www.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/cse/index.cfm
CSE Consulting - http://www.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/cse/consulting.cfm
House that Kenan-Flagler Built - http://specials.kenan-flagler.unc.edu/MBAclubs/habitat/Pages/default.aspx

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Highway Safety Research Center

The Highway Safety Research Center operates two federally funded, national clearinghouses dedicated to promoting pedestrian and bicycle safety. The Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center (PBIC) covers health and safety, engineering, advocacy, education, enforcement, access, and mobility. The PBIC also conducts courses, including Creating Livable Communities through Public Involvement, which provides strategies to earn broader support for pedestrian and bicycle projects. The National Center for Safe Routes to School assists communities to enable and encourage children to walk and bicycle to school. The center offers information, resources, and training to make communities more livable for everyone.

Links:
Highway Safety Research Center - http://www.hsrc.unc.edu/index.cfm
Pedestrian and Bicycle Information Center - http://www.bicyclinginfo.org/
National Center for Safe Routes to School - http://www.saferoutesinfo.org/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Institute for the Environment

The Environmental Resource Program is the institute’s primary outreach and public service unit. The focus is on increasing awareness of the role that individual actions can play in achieving community sustainability. Workshops involve K–12 teachers, high school students, African-American communities, and local and state governments and agencies.

Links:
Environmental Resource Program - http://www.ie.unc.edu/erp/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

Morehead Planetarium and Science Center

Morehead PlanetariumThe Morehead Planetarium and Science Center is one of the foremost intersections between the University and the public with approximately 135,000 visitors annually. Contemporary scientific expertise from the University is shared through planetarium shows, public lectures, summer camps, and skywatching sessions.

The Morehead Afterschool Program (MAP), started in 2008 incorporates sustainable practices into both the curriculum and daily activities. MAP educators and their students ride public transit to the planetarium, construct projects with reusable and recyclable materials, and learn about the concepts of sustainability.

Links:
Morehead Planetarium and Science Center - http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/
Morehead Afterschool Program - http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/index.cfm?fuseaction=page&filename=afterschool.html

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

North Carolina Botanical Garden

Leaders of the North Carolina Botanical GardenThe North Carolina Botanical Garden is an international leader in conservation biology. Working to promote a sustainable relationship between people and nature, the garden hosts a rich variety of public events and educational opportunities. The garden is a training site for teachers in the Earth Partnership for Schools program. Thousands of local public school students participate each year in on-site tours. Off-site outreach connects with schools through the Visiting Plant program available for 5th graders.

The garden’s conservation practices and research educate the community at large. Water-wise gardening, reducing pesticide and fertilizer use, and shunning the use of invasive species are all practices that Garden visitors see firsthand. Seminars present these practices in greater depth. The garden’s new Education Center takes this training to a new level by serving as a working model of sustainable building design features as the first public platinum LEED-certified building.

Links:
North Carolina Botanical Garden - http://www.ncbg.unc.edu/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

RENCI

The Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) uses its technological expertise to promote economic and environmental sustainability, engage community members, and meet campus needs in areas like computational science and advanced visualization. By providing cutting-edge tools and engaging with outside organizations, RENCI is driving innovation in North Carolina.

Among its many programs, RENCI partners with the North Carolina Floodplain Remapping Project to create detailed computer models of potential storm surge effects along the coastal plain. These models are vital in the creation of new floodplain maps, which guide safe development in coastal counties from Currituck to Brunswick. The maps also contribute to the development of disaster response and evacuation plans. A flood sensor network, developed in collaboration with fast-growing Brunswick County, enables emergency managers to monitor flood-prone and critical roadways remotely and in real time during floods and evacuations.

Links:
RENCI - http://www.renci.org/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

School of Government

The UNC School of GovernmentUNC’s School of Government has a long history of providing resources, information, and professional development opportunities for community leaders. Before taking office in 2009, Governer Beverly Purdue’s transition team held a series of open public meetings on a variety of topics critical to North Carolina’s future, including the environment and natural resources, energy, aging, education, and transportation. The meetings were facilitated by the UNC School of Government and the Small Business and Technology Development Center.

The Environmental Finance Center, located within the School of Government, provides sustainability training and tools for local governments. Promoting financially sound means of managing water and waste management infrastructure and programs constitutes the majority of the center’s work. Recent initiatives broach a broader array of sustainability topics, including the development of eco-industrial parks and means to finance energy efficiency and greenhouse gas emissions reductions. The center hosts the Sustainable Government Practices listserv to share best practices and information among state agencies and local governments.

Links:
School of Government - http://www.sog.unc.edu/
Environmental Finance Center - http://www.efc.unc.edu/

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space

School of Law

The Law School’s Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity advances social equity and economic prosperity in part by providing seed funding for innovative research projects with community partners. In 2007, the center joined with several departments to form the New Orleans Recovery Initiative. This year-long project connected University expertise with community rebuilding efforts in the wake of Hurricane Katrina. A 2008 research project explored ways to stem the loss of minority-owned farms in North Carolina through sustainable food systems.  Students perform empirical research and facilitate a student-organized poverty awareness week with speakers, workshops, films, and other events.

Students in the Law School are putting their skills to work in the Chapel Hill community and earning valuable experience through programs such as the Environmental Law Project. Activities range from hosting discussion panels to contributing to the UNC Environmental Law Symposium. The Weatherization Working Group, a subset of the Environmental Law Project, is working with the Town of Chapel Hill to weatherize low-income housing units. Motivated by the disproportionate impact of utility costs on low-income residents, and the increased environmental costs of climate control in old housing stock, these students are evaluating the different contracting and funding models the town could use. If implemented, such a program would have multiple financial, health, and environmental benefits.

Links:
Center on Poverty, Work and Opportunity - http://www.law.unc.edu/centers/poverty/default.aspx
Environmental Law Project - http://studentorgs.law.unc.edu/elp/default.aspx

space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space space
spacer
Honey Honey  
Text:
Increase font size
Decrease font size