Social responsibility and community engagement are among the core values of Suffolk University today as they have been since the University was established more than a century ago.

Carnegie Community Service Classification logoIts institutional focus on community engagement places Suffolk University among 361 U.S. colleges and universities to have earned the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching Community Engagement Classification, the gold standard for community engagement. The University earned the classification in 2010.

Community engagement at Suffolk is realized through programming that ranges from Center for Community Engagement service-learning and volunteer opportunities through the Law School’s legal clinics and pro bono efforts.

The Carnegie Foundation defines community engagement as the “collaboration between institutions of higher education and their larger communities … for the mutually beneficial exchange of knowledge and resources in a context of partnership and reciprocity.”

Unlike other Carnegie Foundation classifications, this is an elective classification, and Suffolk earned its place on the Carnegie roster by submitting materials describing the nature and extent of its engagement with the community. Suffolk’s Community Engagement Classification will be due for renewal in 2020, and, because the application involves extensive self-study, Suffolk is expected to begin the process in 2018.

“The importance of this elective classification is borne out by the response of so many campuses that have demonstrated their deep engagement with local, regional, national, and global communities,” said John Saltmarsh, director of the New England Resource Center for Higher Education in announcing the 2015 roster, which includes Suffolk.. “These are campuses that are improving teaching and learning, producing research that makes a difference in communities, and revitalizing their civic and academic missions.”