UTAH CAMPUS COMPACT PAST AND PRESENT
In the early 1990s, institutions of higher education in Utah were loosely organized in the Serving Utah Network (SUN) that sought to strengthen community service and learning at each of the state’s colleges and universities. Most institutions had some level of involvement in community service, but many staff and faculty desired to deepen this commitment and hoped to better integrate service into the curriculum.
In the mid‐1990s, Utah began looking to the national Campus Compact, an organization of college and university presidents, that encouraged higher education to fulfill a public mission by engaging students in service and learning in the community. In August 1995, representatives of each campus endorsed the creation of the Utah Campus Compact as a statewide forum in which students, faculty and staff could learn together and help prepare future citizens and leaders. On November 21, 1996, a coalition of all of Utah’s college and university presidents formally created the Utah Campus Compact with a mission to foster in students the values and skills of citizenship through active involvement in academically‐based and co curricular public and community service. The Board of Directors, consisting of all member campus presidents, approved the mission statement, and Utah became the 18th state to join the national Campus Compact network.
In 2004 an annual Utah State Legislative appropriation was approved, and in 2005 Utah became the first state compact to include all of its non‐profit higher education institutions. In 2008, guided by a new strategic plan, UTCC focused on two main goals: 1) to continue to advance community engagement in higher education across the state as it had done for the past ten years; and 2) undertake a statewide higher education initiative. They worked to embed engagement more deeply across each campus and bridge the opportunity gap by improving educational access and success.
Utah Campus Compact continues today as a vibrant statewide coalition of nine colleges and universities that helps to engage annually over 34,000 college students in Utah communities.
Today the Campus Compact network includes a national office, thirty‐four affiliate organizations, and almost 1,200 colleges and universities that represent public and private, two‐year and four‐year campuses and some six million students. While the state and national Compacts are formally affiliated and share a fundamental commitment to integrating public and community engagement into campus and academic life, each organization operates independently, developing programs and priorities in response to its distinctive context.
The Utah Campus Compact continues today as a vibrant statewide coalition of nine colleges and universities that helps to engage annually over 34,000 college students in Utah communities. UTCC collaborates with college and university presidents, faculty, students, staff, and community members to build and support public engagement in higher education. As a coalition, a network, and an important component of Utah’s higher education landscape, the Compact provides strong leadership, shares current research and resources, demonstrates best practices, and sponsors an array of diverse networking opportunities for all member institutions.
The Compact believes that all of Utah’s institutions of higher education hold a significant role within their communities. As members of communities across the state, each institution serves as an anchor with a critical role to play in student learning and social responsibility. With this understanding, the primary role of Utah Campus Compact is to strengthen the capacity of member institutions to promote the larger, public purpose of higher education. To build higher education’s capacity to serve the public good, the Compact works closely with member institutions as they craft strategies for students and faculty to lend their time, talent and knowledge to local communities while enhancing their own learning and scholarship; strengthening communities across Utah.