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Commission on Community-Engaged Scholarship in the Health Professions

Project Description
Commission Members
Project Updates
How You Can Contribute to this Project
For More Information

Project Description

Members of the Commission during a meeting in March 2004 in Washington DC

A project funded by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation

Community-Campus Partnerships for Health has been funded by the WK Kellogg Foundation to convene a Commission on Community-Engaged Scholarship in the Health Professions to take a leadership role in creating a more supportive culture and reward system for health professional faculty involved in community-based participatory research, service-learning and other forms of "community-engaged scholarship." Click here for a powerpoint presentation on the report and recommendations.

Many prominent national organizations, including the Institute of Medicine in its 2002 reports on the future of public health, are calling upon health professional schools and academic health centers to be more responsive to their communities. A frequently cited barrier, however, to sustained faculty involvement in community-based teaching, research and service is the risk associated with trying to achieve promotion and tenure. Barbara Sabol, Program Director with the WK Kellogg Foundation, explains that, "the WK Kellogg Foundation has long made a significant investment in programs and policies that advance community-based public health. Unfortunately, the predominant paradigm of faculty incentives in our nation's health professional schools runs counter to the foundation's focus on engaged institutions. This work is designed to provide the leadership and practical tools that are needed to reward faculty for linking their scholarship to community needs and concerns." A more supportive culture and reward system for health professional faculty involved in community-engaged scholarship is key to having them generate new knowledge about the social and ecologic determinants of health, educate a new generation of public health professionals who are prepared to effect change, and contribute to improved public health.

The Commission seeks to elevate the discussion around the issue of community-engaged scholarship by disseminating reports on key issues such as the rationale for community-engaged scholarship and recommendations for peer review criteria and processes; and implementing strategies to influence support for community-engaged scholarship through such means as engaging key stakeholder groups, writing editorials and making presentations. The Commission is comprised of a diverse group of leaders from academic institutions, professional associations, community-based organizations, philanthropy and government who bring a wealth of relevant experience, knowledge and connections combined with a desire for change. A complete listing of Commission members appears below.

In addition to the Commission, the initiative also includes the development and dissemination of tools that health professional faculty and promotion and tenure committees can use to better understand, document, and assess community-engaged scholarship. The toolkit will include specific guidance for faculty on planning for and navigating the promotion and tenure process; examples of faculty portfolios; suggested methods for documenting and assessing community-engaged scholarship; guidance to community partners for how they can play a meaningful role in the process; and a directory of funding sources for community-engaged scholarship.

Commission on Community-Engaged Scholarship in the Health Professions

Alex Allen
Vice President, Community Planning & Research
Isles, Inc.
Trenton, NJ

Barbara Brandt
Assistant Vice President for Education
University of Minnesota Academic Health Center
Minneapolis, MN

Marshall Chin
Associate Professor of Medicine
University of Chicago School of Medicine
Chicago, IL

Jay Chunn
Director/Principle Investigator
National Center for Health Behavioral Change
Urban Medical Institute
Morgan State University
Baltimore, MD

Amy Driscoll
Director of the Center for Teaching, Learning, and Assessment
California State University-Monterey Bay
Seaside, CA

Eugenia Eng
Professor of Public Health
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
Chapel Hill, NC

Clyde Evans
Vice President
Association of Academic Health Centers
Washington, DC

Elmer Freeman
Executive Director
Center for Community Health Education Research and Service, Inc
Boston, MA

Charles Glassick
Senior Associate Emeritus
Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching
Spartanburg, SC

Larry Green
Director of Extramural Programs and Academic Linkages
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Public Health Practice
Program Office
Atlanta, GA

Jessie Gruman
Executive Director
Center for the Advancement of Health
Washington, DC

Susan Gust
Coordinator and Co-founder
Phillips Neighborhood Healthy Housing Collaborative
Minneapolis, MN

Laura Leviton
Senior Program Officer
Robert Wood Johnson Foundation
Princeton, NJ

Alonzo Plough
Public Health- Seattle & King County
Seattle, WA

Shobha Srinivasan
Health Scientist Administrator
Division of Extramural Research and Training
Susceptibility & Population Health Branch
National Institute for Environmental Health Sciences
Research Triangle Park, NC

Susan Tortolero
Director of Texas Prevention Research Center
University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston
Houston, TX

Pat Wahl
Dean, University of Washington School of Public Health and Community
Seattle, WA

Terri Wright
Program Director, Health Policy
W.K. Kellogg Foundation
Battle Creek, MI

W.K. Kellogg Foundation was established in 1930 "to help people help themselves through the practical application of knowledge and resources to improve their quality of life and that of future generations." To achieve the greatest impact, the Foundation targets its grants toward specific areas. These include: health; food systems and rural development; youth and education; and philanthropy and volunteerism. Within these areas, attention is given to exploring learning opportunities in leadership; information and communication technology; capitalizing on diversity; and social and economic community development. Grants are concentrated in the United States, Latin America and the Caribbean, and the southern African countries of Botswana, Lesotho, Mozambique, South Africa, Swaziland, and Zimbabwe.

Project Updates

In February 2005, the Commission on Community-Engaged Scholarship in the Health Professions released a national strategy for closing the gap between the promise of health professional schools as community-engaged institutions and the reality of how faculty members are typically judged and rewarded. The report, Linking Scholarship and Communities, contains detailed recommendations for action by health professional schools and their national associations that can support community-engaged scholarship and cites promising practices that illustrate their implementation.

  • Click here to read the press release.
  • Click here for the report's executive summary.
  • Click here to order a hard copy of the report.
  • Click here for a PowerPoint presentation on the report and recommendations. If you use these slides, please click here to let us know.

With funding from the US Department of Education's Fund for the Improvement of Postsecondary Education (FIPSE), the Community-Engaged Scholarship for Health Collaborative is a group of 10 health professional schools that aims to significantly change faculty review, promotion and tenure policies and practices to recognize and reward community-engaged scholarship - in the participating schools and their peers across the country. The Collaborative is already working to implement many of the Commission's recommendations and tools.

Click here for PowerPoint slides from a workshop on the project given in October 2004 by CCPH executive director Sarena Seifer and program director Jen Kauper-Brown at the CCPH conference in Atlanta, GA.

Three abstracts related to the Commission's work were presented during the American Public Health Association's 132nd Annual Meeting, November 6-10, 2004, in Washington, DC.

(1) Commission on community-engaged scholarship in the health professions: Advancing a promotion and tenure system to realize the promise of community-based participatory research and service learning

(2) Advancing the scholarship of public health practice: A faculty toolkit for developing strong portfolios for promotion and tenure

(3) Toolkit for community-engaged scholarship: Successfully navigating the faculty promotion and tenure process

Click here for the PowerPoint slides used for these presentations.

Click here for a powerpoint presentation on the Commission and related initiatives given in May 2004 in Montréal by CCPH program coordinator Jen Kauper-Brown as part of the session entitled "Adapting University Incentives to Applied Research" at the 1st Conference of the Canadian Association for Health Services and Policy Research co-sponsored by l'Université de Montréal & McGill University.

Click here for a powerpoint presentation on the Commission and related initiatives given in June 2004 by CCPH program coordinator Jen Kauper-Brown at the Institute for Community Research 2004 Conference, "Crossroads: Critical Issues in Community-Based Research Partnerships."

How YOU Can Contribute to this Project

The Commission is seeking to highlight examples of how health professional schools and departments are currently recognizing and rewarding community-engaged scholarship, and examples of faculty members who are successfully pursuing community-engaged scholarship.

Specifically, we are looking for promising practices from institutions and faculty based in the United States in these categories:

Health professional schools or departments:

  • Changes in review, promotion and tenure (RPT) guidelines and policies to reflect an expanded definition of scholarship
  • Orientations and trainings for RPT committee members
  • Inclusion of community partners in the development of RPT guidelines and policies
  • Investment in the recruitment and retention of community-engaged faculty members
  • Discussion about the definition of scholarship and the need to recognize and reward community-engaged scholarship
  • Meaningful involvement of community partners in the RPT process
  • Solicitation of external peer review for products of community-engaged scholarship
  • Other types of support and reward of community-engaged scholarship

Health professional faculty:

  • Been able to meet their goal of having community-engaged scholarship be the central focus of their careers
  • Been promoted based on their community-engaged scholarship
  • Met their school's expectations for publication in peer-reviewed journals
  • Received funding from CDC to support their community-engaged scholarship
  • Received funding from institutional sources to support their community-engaged scholarship
  • Received funding from NIH to support their community-engaged scholarship
  • Received funding from private foundations to their support community-engaged scholarship
  • Received tenure based on their community-engaged scholarship

Please click here to post information about any promising practices.

We welcome your suggestions of key articles, reports, people and programs that should be considered for this project. You may send questions, comments, citations or full-text materials by e-mail or by mail:

Community-Campus Partnerships for Health (CCPH)
c/o Medical College of Wisconsin
Public and Community Health
Attn: Alicia Witten
UW Box 354809 Seattle, WA 98195-4809

For More Information

To be added to our email list for Commission announcements and updates or for more information on this project, please contact CCPH at or (206) 666-3406.

Click here to read the press release announcing the project.

Click here for the report's executive summary.

For more information on community-engaged scholarship, please click here.



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