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Campus Compact > Initiatives > The Research University Civic Engagement Network (TRUCEN)
Civic Engagement at Research Universities


The Research University Civic Engagement Network (TRUCEN)
Civic Engagement at Research Universities

The Research University Civic Engagement Network (TRUCEN) works to advance civic engagement and engaged scholarship among research universities and to create resources and models for use across higher education. TRUCEN calls upon research university colleagues to embrace a bold vision for civic and community engagement and work to bring it about.

Read the TRUCEN Statement of Mission, Purpose and Goals here.

Read the History of TRUCEN here.

As secretariat for the network, Campus Compact serves as a convener and as a disseminator of information and resources.

Click here for TRUCEN reports, models, the Engaged Scholarship Toolkit, and the Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement (JHEOE).

Mobilizing Research Universities

In recent years, increasing numbers of colleges and universities have engaged in innovative efforts to engage their surrounding communities. Recognizing research universities’ potential to provide leadership in this effort, in the fall of 2005 Campus Compact and the Jonathan M. Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service at Tufts University convened scholars from some of the many research universities that have undertaken ambitious community efforts to discuss how their institutions are promoting engagement on their campuses and in their communities.

In 2007, the group expanded, creating a research universities and civic engagement network, and convened for a second meeting at the University of California, Los Angeles, to further the conversation. The group not only shared their ideas; they decided to take action by taking on a more visible leadership role in the civic engagement movement.

In 2008, the group convened at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, to focus on civic and community-engaged scholarship. At the meeting, the group agreed to organize itself formally as TRUCEN and open its membership to all Carnegie Foundation-defined “very high research institutions” that share its goals. Meeting participants reviewed efforts to strengthen institutional rewards and incentives for engaged scholarship, to identify special challenges and opportunities presented by research universities, and to explore constructive steps to encourage engaged scholarship across research universities. The group also initiated design of a major online resource for advancing this work.

Ongoing TRUCEN meetings continue to explore ways to advance civic and community engagement among research universities and other institutions of higher education and to generate additional models and resources to support this effort.

TRUCEN Members


  • Arizona State University
  • Brown University
  • Cornell University
  • Duke University
  • Emory University
  • Florida State University
  • Georgetown University
  • Harvard University
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Michigan State University
  • North Carolina State University
  • Northwestern University
  • University of Notre Dame
  • Princeton University
  • Stanford University
  • Tufts University
  • Tulane University
  • University at Buffalo, SUNY
  • University of California, Berkeley
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of Connecticut
  • University of Georgia
  • University of Iowa
  • University of Kansas
  • University of Kentucky
  • University of Maryland College Park
  • University of Massachusetts, Amherst
  • University of Michigan
  • University of Minnesota
  • University of Mississippi
  • University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • University of Oklahoma
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • University of South Florida
  • University of Tennessee, Knoxville
  • University of Texas at Austin
  • University of Washington
  • University of Wisconsin Madison
  • Washington University in St. Louis

For more information, please contact:

Maggie Grove
Director of Operations
Campus Compact
E: mgrove {at} compact(.)org
Tel: 617.357.1881, x 207


Thanks to Campus Compact for all that you have done over the years to nurture the campus service and service-learning movement. When we started at St. A's 15 years ago there was a feeling among some campuses that we were seeing higher education's latest 'flash in the pan.' Instead it was the beginning of a revolution of ideas and relationships, and you guys have been fueling us all the way."

-Daniel Forbes, Director, Meelia Center for Community Service, Saint Anselm College