13:37 PM

UHD Earns 2015 Carnegie Foundation Community Engagement Classification

497-Carnegie-logo_News-IconThis week, the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching selected the University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) as one of five universities in Texas to receive its 2015 Community Engagement Classification.

The Carnegie Foundation selected 240 U.S. colleges and universities for this classification based on a framework centered on institutions' community engagement and service commitments. In total, 361 campuses in 33 states and U.S. territories received the 2015 Community Engagement Classification - out of a total of 3,000 institutions nationwide.

"Community service is at the heart of who we are as a University," said Bill Flores, UHD president. "This prestigious classification recognizes UHD's dedication to engaging and supporting the great city of Houston and is a testament to the commitment and hard work of our students, faculty and staff."

Last year, UHD students contributed more than 73,000 community service hours, serving approximately 82,000 individuals in Houston. Today, the University offers nearly 500 courses with a community engagement component.

The Carnegie Foundation invited colleges and universities with an institutional focus on community engagement to apply for this elective classification, which requires five years of extensive documentation of curricular and co-curricular community service activities.

"The importance of this elective classification is borne out by the response of so many campuses that have demonstrated their deep engagement with local, national, and global communities," said John Saltmarsh, director of the New England Resource Center for Higher Education. "These are campuses that are improving teaching and learning, producing research that makes a difference in communities, and revitalizing their civic and academic missions."

This recognition was initially offered in 2006 as part of an extensive restructuring of The Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. The Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching is committed to developing networks of ideas, individuals and institutions to advance teaching and learning.

"While we prepare tomorrow's business, scientific, criminal justice, education and nonprofit leaders, we also must create community service leaders who will improve their own neighborhoods and use their talents to make a difference for others," said Flores. "Working together as one, we can change the face of homelessness, hunger, poverty and other issues in the communities where we live and work."