University-Community Partnerships in Small-Town Idaho: Addressing Diverse Community Needs through Interdisciplinary Outreach and Engagement

Beginning with a review of community-university partnerships, this paper presents three case studies and the interdisciplinary partnership model for outreach and engagement at the University of Idaho (U of I). More detailed sections explore partnership relationships, academic and service outcomes, and the prospect of exporting the community-university model to other institutions. We make the argument for an interdisciplinary outreach and engagement model that focuses on multiple partnerships both within and outside the university to comprehensively address communities’ design and planning needs. Addressing different stages in the planning process, from visioning to policy development, requires matching appropriate skill sets of academic programs with the needs and abilities of community partners. During our 20-year history of working with transitioning communities, we have found that they face a host of economic, environmental, infrastructure, social, and governmental problems. A long-term strategy is generally needed to prioritize and schedule partnership projects (Reardon, 1999; Sorensen & Lawson, 2011).

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Author(s):

Tamara Laninga

Gary Austin

Wendy McClure

Publication Date:

2011

 

Thank you to the Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship (JCES) for kindly allowing URBAN to share this resource.  JCES is published twice a year at The University of Alabama. It is a peer-reviewed international research journal through which faculty, staff, students, and community partners disseminate scholarly works. JCES integrates teaching, research, and community engagement in all disciplines, addressing critical problems identified through a community-participatory process.

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