Penn State Intercom......April 12 , 2001

Kellogg Mini-Grants awarded
for campus, community initiatives

Fifteen diverse teams of campus and community members have been recognized for their work on projects that engage the community and community concerns.

Kellogg Mini-Grants, ranging from $1,200 to $8,000, were awarded to fund the projects, each of which addresses recognized campus/community issues. Among the projects are the youth leadership program at Penn State New Kensington; a victim to victory community coalition at University Park; and an early awareness program at Penn State York.

"These initiatives are excellent examples of how Penn State and the community can work together to improve the quality of life," said President Graham B. Spanier.

The awarding of the mini-grants is part of Phase II in the Leadership for Institutional Change Initiative (LINC), a partnership between Penn State and Cheyney University, which is funded by the Kellogg Foundation. The initiative was started in 1998 for the purpose of developing new leadership models that will allow land grant institutions to strengthen ties between institutions and their constituents. The first phase of the LINC Initiative featured a national dialogue among selected land grant universities about defining flexible and dynamic leadership models for the 21st century.

"The purpose of the second phase is to continue to learn from Phase I, by putting into practice the concepts and models of change and leadership development," said Louise E. Sandmeyer, executive director of the Center for Quality and Planning.

Sandmeyer and David Day, associate professor of psychology, are co-directors of the Kellogg LINC Initiative.

An example of the collaboration between campus and community members is the Youth Leadership Program administered by Leadership Centre County.

"Our goal is to provide programming to youth entering grades 10 and 11 that will promote a better sense of community and civic responsibility," said Georgia Abbey, executive director of Leadership Centre County.

The program works directly with the five school districts of Centre County in the recruitment and selection of the youth participants, and consists of nine program days throughout the year, each day focusing on a different topic, such as history, community issues and leadership traits. By the end of the program year, the class members select, plan and execute a community project.

"The University is involved as part of its commitment to the Kellogg Commission definition of an 'engaged institution,'" said Bruce Ellis, administrative director for undergraduate programs in The Smeal College of Business Administration.

Ellis said engaged institutions are productively involved with their communities through the development of partnerships and programs that enrich the community and enhance the student experience by their involvement with the various partnerships.

"The Youth Leadership Program provides the opportunity for the University to be engaged in a meaningful way for both parties," he said. "For example, students from the Penn State AT&T Center for Service Leadership are involved with the Youth Leadership Program as mentors, community project leaders and leadership trainers."

The next call for mini-grant proposals will be in fall 2001. For a complete list of Kellogg Mini-Grant recipients, check the Web at http://www.psu.edu/president/cqi/LINC/grant_awards.htm. For more information about the LINC Initiative, check the Web at http://www.psu.edu/president/cqi/LINC/overview.htm.

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