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UNP Hosts Brown Bag on Civic Engagement

March 29, 2007 — Four University Neighborhood Partners (UNP) program coordinators will present brown bag conversation about the successful partnership models currently practiced through four campus-community partnerships at the University of Utah, Student Union, Room 161 on Friday, March 30, 2007, from 12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m.

As part of the Lowell Bennion Center’s Civic Engagement Week March 26 through March 30, 2007, four of UNP program coordinators will share the models, benefits, challenges, and scholarship that emerge through the campus-community partnership models in place at UNP. Speakers include:

  • Kim Schmit, Hartland program coordinator;

  • Anita Watson, United for Kids coordinator;

  • Charles Bernard, Westside Leadership Institute; and

  • Mike Greenwell, Youth Book Exchange.

These four programs are represent the 13 partnerships currently facilitated by UNP. United for Kids (UFK) is a family resource center and network focused on empowering west side families with tools that will guide their children’s academic success. Youth Book Exchange is a free weekly program that encourages a love for reading among children from west Salt Lake neighborhoods by offering access to a lending library located in the UNP office. The Westside Leadership Institute (WLI) offers leadership workshops taught by University faculty and community leaders to west Salt Lake residents while connecting them to local decision-making bodies, funding sources, and further support. Hartland Partnership Center is a comprehensive capacity-building project co-created by University members and residents that brings a set of resources-family financial fitness, home buyer education, health access, English-as-a-Second Language classes, and early childhood programs-together in a rental complex for its 800 residents, 75% of whom are non-native English speaking immigrants or refugees.

Examples of the academic scholarship (dissertation proposal and reports) that have resulted from this reciprocal research will be available during the presentation.

Since its inception five years ago, University Neighborhood Partners bridges Utah”s flagship university with seven west Salt Lake neighborhoods and various local community organizations to forge campus-community relationships that result in mutually-beneficial learning, action, and respect. Through UNP, University researchers develop relationships that enable them to tap into the existing knowledge pool underrepresented communities offer, and team up with residents to address various community challenges or opportunities. The University is also able to cultivate an increasingly diverse pool of qualified students for the University’s student body, an asset that enriches the educational experience for all students, while empowering those communities by equipping residents with the educational skills the University offers.

University Neighborhood Partners:

Rosemarie Hunter, 972-3620
Sarah Monroe, 972-3126
Charles Bernard, 699-7571
Kim Schmit, 973-6055
Anita Watson, 364-3877, cell 801-573-0879
Mike Greenwell, 972-3596