May 23, 2022

Einhorn Center Partners with AAP to Support College-Wide Community-Engaged Learning

With the support of this partnership, AAP plans to further advance community-engaged learning and scholarship.

By Molly Sheridan

hand moving pieces on an urban scale model on a wood tableA site model for sustainable food system mechanisms in the Brownsville community in Brooklyn for an architecture and planning studio taught by visiting critic and alum Peter Robinson (B.Arch. '98) at AAP NYC. image / I.T. Blair (M.R.P. '22)

The David M. Einhorn Center for Community Engagement has awarded the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning (AAP) a three-year $350,000 grant to support ongoing work to advance community engagement in teaching and research initiatives across the departments. In addition, they are providing $150,000 over this same timeframe to support hiring a Community Engaged Learning Coordinator for a total of $500,000.

"We see timely, innovative, and creative work relevant to communities as central to how all three of our disciplines engage," noted City and Regional Planning Professor Victoria Beard, who also directs the Cornell Mui Ho Center for Cities. "In preparing students to build a more equitable, just, and sustainable future, we recognize that first they must understand how to be partners and cocreators in every step of the process. We are all in this together; at AAP, we are dedicated to an ongoing process of learning by doing."

With the support of this partnership, AAP plans to further advance community-engaged learning and scholarship by expanding existing curricular and cocurricular options for students and faculty while also creating new opportunities for undergraduate students. The center will further develop these opportunities by seeding engaged scholarship and supporting partnerships with external stakeholders.

"In the Einhorn Center, we've long known AAP is fertile ground for cultivating community-engaged learning," said Richard Kiely, senior fellow in the Einhorn Center. "Amplifying their engagement initiative within their new — and exciting — Mui Ho Center for Cities not only aligns with the values of the community-based practices the Einhorn Center supports, but gives the work a context ripe for continued growth. We look forward to our continuing collaboration with AAP to advance and sustain community-engaged learning curricular and cocurricular opportunities for all students."

The phased three-year plan includes activities such as developing a shared understanding of what community engagement means in and across the architecture, art, and planning disciplines; documenting a baseline of community-engaged curricular and cocurricular opportunities, as well as developing a system for data gathering and evaluation going forward; and expanding and deepening these efforts while supporting the development of new engagement opportunities.

With an eye toward the long-term, AAP also plans to dedicate resources to intensify communications and fundraising efforts that will allow the college to prioritize and sustain ongoing community-engaged work well beyond the grant period's conclusion in three years.


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