CSU, Chico Receives Grant from Keck Foundation
In December 2010, Chico State was awarded a $250,000 grant by the W.M. Keck Foundation in Los Angeles.
The funds will be used for the purpose of extending the principles of “Public Sphere Pedagogy” (PSP) to general education courses beyond the first year. Developed originally to introduce the idea of civic learning into classes taken by freshmen, PSP is a teaching strategy that demonstrably enhances both students’ scholarship and their readiness to take up their responsibilities as adult members of a democracy.
The grant will support three activities: First, it will offer assistance to faculty interested in developing new courses or civic learning opportunities for the “pathways” that will constitute the University’s new General Education program. Second, through annual “Civic Learning Institutes” and the subsequent formation of an ongoing faculty learning community, it will provide faculty with training in building on PSP principles and methods in the courses they teach. Third, through a “Neighborhood Connections Project,” it will create a community-situated laboratory where students can learn first-hand how to do the work of citizens. Students will be trained to work in local neighborhoods helping residents establish civic networks that will improve communication, foster the growth of collaborative relationships, and enhance their ability to take action that strengthens both their neighborhoods and the community as a whole.
The new Keck-supported activities will advance substantially the University’s effort to transform the way members of the campus, local communities, and the region interact. By strengthening the ties that bind together our commitments to scholarship, teaching, and public service, we will take a great stride forward in improving the civic preparation of our students and in revitalizing the civic mission of both Chico State University and the institution of the university in American life.
California State University, Chico gratefully acknowledges the generous support of the W.M. Keck Foundation for its support.