Across the United States and Canada, many CUMU member institutions are committed to place-based engagements (Yamamura & Koth, 2018) and value them as a powerful way to connect the resources and investments of the campus to the development of communities in ways that foster mutually beneficial impacts.
A growing number of CUMU member institutions are undertaking hyperlocal engagement—strategically organized community engagement efforts to focus on a bounded area within its larger city or metropolitan region in ways that enhance the institution’s ability to form partnerships and advance community development.
In spring 2019, Lina Dostilio, Ed.D., associate vice chancellor for community engagement at the University of Pittsburgh, was announced as CUMU’s first research fellow. Recognizing hyperlocal engagement as a growing area of practice among CUMU member institutions, Dr. Dostilio completed a benchmarking study, as part of her fellowship, to catalog the diversity of hyperlocal engagement strategies and to investigate which areas of community capacity were of interest to hyperlocal engagements. The research study was supported by the Kresge Foundation.