Brooklyn, N.Y., May 14– Kingsborough Community College (KCC) is one of 10 community colleges, in the country competitively selected to take the lead in “Bridging Cultures to Form a Nation: Difference, Community and Democratic Thinking,” a new initiative focused on civic leaning through the Humanities. It is funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities and co-sponsored by the Association of American Colleges and Universities and The Democracy Commitment.
Teams from each of the 10 colleges will participate in the three-year curriculum and faculty development project designed to:
infuse questions about difference, engaged community, and democratic thinking into transfer courses in the humanities;
promote greater adoption of practices that advance important civic learning outcomes;
create a series of humanities-enriched professional development opportunities for full-time and adjunct faculty; and
expand the project’s impact through collaboration with additional community colleges and partnerships with state humanities councils.
“The community colleges chosen for this project are poised to lead the way in developing curricular and co-curricular practices steeped in the humanities and designed to prepare students to be active and engaged participants in the democratic process,” said Brian Murphy, president of De Anza College, one of the founders of The Democracy Commitment, and a co-director of the Bridging Cultures project. “The entire Democracy Commitment network will benefit greatly from the work these schools will do together over the course of this project.”
We are extraordinarily pleased to have been selected as a national leader for our unswerving dedication and commitment to making civic engagement an integral part of the academic experience at KCC,” said Regina Peruggi, president of KCC. “The preparation of our students to become engaged citizens and leaders of tomorrow is critically important and top priority at KCC.”
“The community colleges in this NEH Bridging Cultures project are answering the national call to action embedded in the recently released national report, A Crucible Moment: College Learning and Democracy’s Future,” said AAC&U Senior Vice President and NEH project co-director Caryn McTighe Musil. “They are targeting high-enrollment humanities courses and adopting proven civic pedagogies that together will offer more students opportunities to increase their knowledge, skills, and commitments to making our multicultural democracy in the US stronger and more effective.”
Bridging Cultures was developed as part of AAC&U’s ongoing initiative on Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement and builds on the recommendations issued in the report, A Crucible Moment: College Learning and Democracy’s Future, released in January 2012 at a White House convening. The key recommendation in A Crucible Moment is to make civic learning in college expected rather than optional for all students, including all those in career and technical programs. Building from this recommendation, Bridging Cultures began in February 2012 with a call for proposals to community colleges across the country, leading to the selection of 10 teams composed of humanities faculty and administrators.
Team members will participate in an intensive summer faculty development institute in August 2012, as well as multiple other faculty development opportunities and partnerships with other community colleges. The project will culminate in a symposium planned for October 2014. Bridging Cultures’ impact will also be strengthened by a partnership with the New York Times Company education group, which is collaborating with TDC in their national initiative. Project participants will use the Epsilen online learning platform to develop forums and to share and co-create resources and course materials.
In addition to KCC selected institutions include Chandler-Gilbert Community College (AZ); County College of Morris (NJ); Georgia Perimeter College (GA); Kapi’olani Community College(HI); Miami Dade College (FL); Middlesex Community College (MA);Mount Wachusett Community College (MA); Lone Star College-Kingwood (TX); and Santa Fe College(FL).
About Kingsborough Com munity College:
Kingsborough Community College, Brooklyn’s only community college, is located on a 70- acre campus in Manhattan Beach, on the southern tip of Brooklyn. The breathtaking campus overlooks three bodies of water: Sheepshead Bay, Jamaica Bay and the Atlantic Ocean. It serves approximately thirty thousand students per year, offering a wide range of credit and non-credit courses in the liberal arts, career education, and specialized programs.
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