Community Development Education Symposium - Detroit, MI. (2019)

Over the last few decades, the community development field has grown substantially, creating a need for further higher education training in community development education. There are approximately 50 graduate and undergraduate community development programs in colleges and universities across the country that focus on rural and urban community development. While this growth seems positive, community development education remains splintered. No foundational education standards, core content, or pedagogical practices for community development education have been identified or agreed upon by community development educators who span diverse disciplines and community contexts. There is also a lack of understanding and communication among educators about what new knowledge and methods are emerging, and where the field is going. In response, community development education requires continual questioning of current methods and innovation to ensure relevancy and value to the field.

The inaugural Community Development Education Symposium will bring together community development educators from across the country to share knowledge, best practices, and new ideas for teaching and learning. The gathering will create a space for community development educators to come together and explore:

  • What new knowledge is emerging?
  • Are there new and emerging models for community development education?
  • Are there changes in the meaning and perception of community development that inform education?
  • What sources of opportunity are influencing innovation in community development education? What are innovative methods for teaching and learning community development?

Through conversation exchanges, tours, and workshops, the symposium will weigh current educational practices and program design. It will also showcase emerging and innovative curricula, educational methods, and student and professional development towards advancing the impact of community development education.