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2015 Community Assistantship Program Grant

by Melissa on October 22nd, 2014
Community Based Research (CBR) is where community knowledge and University knowledge come together to solve the problems of our time. Merging community knowledge with the resources and expertise of the University sheds new light on today’s challenges and helps to identify innovative directions to solve them.According to a key article in the Michigan Journal of Community Service Learning, CBR has three defining characteristics:

  • It is a collaborative enterprise between academic researchers and community members. For CURA, this means that the research questions are defined in partnership and that the project is community-driven.
  • It seeks to democratize knowledge by validating multiple sources of knowledge and promoting the use of multiple methods of discovery. For CURA, this means that academic and community knowledge are valued equally, and that student researchers use a variety of approaches to tackling the research questions.
  • It has a goal of social action for the purpose of achieving social change and justice. For CURA, this means that the emphasis is always placed on the community’s use of the research results.

CBR benefits community organizations by enabling them to make informed, data-driven decisions and provides new perspectives on community issues. CBR benefits students by providing opportunities to apply academic learning to real-world problems and ultimately makes students more employable. CBR also contributes to the wider community by acting as a model of what works in communities that can be replicated by others and contributing to policy discussions on community and regional levels.

The Community Assistantship Program (CAP) supports rural communities interested in hiring a student to work on a community-supported research project. The deadline for project proposals is Oct. 30 with work completed Jan. 8 to May 24, 2015.

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The 2013 American Community Survey’s one-year statistics have been released. To find statistics for your area, please visit the Census Bureau’s American FactFinder page.

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