Campus Compact Action Statement to be Celebrated in Boston

March 17, 2016

Campus Compact will be celebrating the more than 350 signatories on our Action Statement during a Summit of Presidents and Chancellors on March 20, 2016 at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate in Boston.

Over 350 Campus Compact member presidents and chancellors have already signed the Campus Compact 30th Anniversary Action Statement, a document containing strong language about the public obligations of higher education that commits campuses to taking specific steps to deepen their engagement for the benefit of students, communities, and the broader public.

The document concludes with a commitment by each signatory to create a Campus Civic Action Plan to be shared publicly. Campus Compact will support campuses in developing these plans.

“The Campus Compact Action Statement links hundreds of institutions for the common goal of strengthening and extending the public responsibilities of higher education,” said Mark D. Gearan, President of Hobart and William Smith Colleges. “This landmark celebration is an important opportunity to renew our pledge to this cause as we reflect on our continued progress over the past three decades. As colleges and universities reaffirm our intentions on this anniversary, we are well positioned to build upon the significant community and civic engagement taking place on our campuses and to illuminate the path forward for future generations.”

More than 80 signatory presidents and chancellors will attend a Summit at the Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate on March 20 in Boston to celebrate the launch of the call to action.

Speakers at the event include General Stanley McChrystal, chair of the Service Year Alliance; Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet; Alberto Carvalho, Superintendent, Miami-Dade County Public Schools; and a team of social entrepreneurs behind a college access organization called TeenSHARP.

“Higher Education has an important role to play in developing engaged citizens and Campus Compact is leading the charge,” said General Stanley McChrystal, chair of the Service Year Alliance. “As Service Year Alliance seeks to make a service year a common opportunity and cultural expectation, we’re excited to be partnering with Campus Compact to support institutions that are interested in including service years in their Campus Civic Action Plans.”

Victoria Reggie Kennedy, President of the Board and Co-Founder, Edward M. Kennedy Institute for the United States Senate, will welcome attendees to the event. The agenda is action-oriented, with sessions for presidents and chancellors to share ideas for campus-based work and to discuss coordination on national campaigns.

“Each of these institutions has already demonstrated a commitment to higher education with a higher purpose—education dedicated to service of the public good,” Peace Corps Director Carrie Hessler-Radelet said. “We look forward to working with these universities to inspire a new generation of global leaders who are interested in not just imagining a better world, but rolling up their sleeves and doing something about it.”

Campus Compact’s focus is on supporting campuses in the work they do that advances the health and strength of communities and American democracy, both by preparing students for lives of engaged citizenship and by building partnerships to advance community and public goals.

“Colleges and universities exist to promote public goods,” said Campus Compact president Andrew Seligsohn. “By signing the Action Statement and committing to develop Campus Civic Action Plans, these 350 presidents and chancellors are challenging their institutions to go even further in preparing students for lives of engaged citizenship, contributing to the health of communities both local and global, and sustaining our democracy in the face of the twin challenges of inequality and polarization.”

Following the Summit, Campus Compact will hold its 30th Anniversary Conference, a national conference with more than 650 attendees, at the Sheraton Boston.

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