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Projects with Promise

Vol. 27 No. 3

Creating and Improving a Faculty Learning Community for Community-Engaged Research at a Midsized, Open-Enrollment University

August 13, 2021


Community-engaged research (CEnR) occurs when university and community resources are partnered to enrich knowledge, address social issues, and contribute to the public good. The benefits of CEnR include the translation of scientific findings into public initiatives that can improve practice and provide invaluable learning experiences for students. Despite the importance of CEnR, there are barriers to this work and limited information on how to develop an academic infrastructure to support such time-intensive research at teaching-focused universities. In this article, we outline the development, implementation, and evaluation results of a pilot faculty learning community (FLC) at a midsized university, the Community-Engaged Faculty Research Fellows Program. This high-visibility program provided consultation and ongoing support for new and established faculty research projects and resulted in high program satisfaction and multiple scholarly and other published works. We provide recommendations from our lessons learned for similar programs at other institutions.