Northeastern Illinois University community garden

Northeastern named Lead Institution in civic engagement

Friday, September 12, 2014

Northeastern Illinois University has been named one of nearly 100 colleges and universities in the nation as a Lead Institution by NASPA – Student Affairs Administrators in Higher Education, the leading voice for the student affairs profession.

As a participating institution in NASPA’s initiative on civic learning and democratic engagement, Northeastern has committed to being a leader among American universities in encouraging students’ civic development through thoughtful community partnerships, engaging leadership opportunities and democratic participation.

“Northeastern Illinois University is pleased to be selected to participate in NASPA’s network of institutions dedicated to developing students’ sense of civic identity. Civic engagement is a core value of higher education,” said Northeastern Vice President for Student Affairs Frank Ross. “Being recognized as a national leader in this field is a reflection of quality of our current efforts and also our ongoing commitment to inspiring students to challenge themselves through leadership and service roles moving forward.”

Civic leadership and engagement are embedded in a variety of ways in the Northeastern Student Affairs strategic plan. Some specific successes are:

  • Last year’s launch of the Reimagining Food Initiative, an interdisciplinary academic and cocurricular project aimed at addressing various issues surrounding food from multiple perspectives.
  • The NEIUGround partnership with the Peterson Garden Project
  • The TurboVote initiative to promote voter engagement among students
  • Working with NextGen IL to promote political action
  • National days of service including 9/11, Martin Luther King Jr. Day and Cesar Chavez Day
  • Alternative spring break programs sponsored by Student Leadership Development
  • Involvement this year in a national study sponsored by the American Democracy Project