The inaugural class of the ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation’s Generation Next Nonprofit Leadership Academy (Gen Next) graduated from its 9-month training on May 8 at the Disability Empowerment Center in Phoenix. Funded by a generous contribution from American Express, Gen Next is a cohort of the Valley’s top emerging nonprofit leaders, chosen to participate in training that provides them with the knowledge and tools needed to take on leadership roles within the nonprofit community.
“Through Gen Next I have learned a lot about my own leadership style and under what circumstances I work most effectively,” says Chela Sullivan, recent graduate of ASU’s Master of Nonprofit Studies program and current Helping Hands Housing Services staff member. “I have also learned that as a manager, I can bring out other people’s strengths by recognizing their leadership styles as well.”
Jany Deng, another member of the inaugural class, was a recipient of nonprofit assistance 10 years ago when he came to the United States as a refugee from Sudan. He graduates this year from the Gen Next program on his road to being a leader in the nonprofit sector.
“As a recipient of services in the past, I have seen how important organization and leadership are in a nonprofit,” says Deng. “Through Gen Next, I learned areas that I need to improve on and I also learned areas that are my strengths. This knowledge will help me to be a better co-worker and to provide better services to my clients.”
Amy Schwabenlender, a Valley of the Sun United Way Gen Next participant, says her favorite part of Gen Next was the connections she made with other members.
“The opportunity to meet other like-minded individuals who have similar career desires in the nonprofit sector was of great use to me,” says Schwabenlender. “It has been not only fun, but beneficial to my work to meet and get to know my classmates. Several of us have found ways to collaborate and share information that was not previously occurring between our organizations.”
Applications for the second Gen Next cohort will be available in June.
The ASU Lodestar Center for Philanthropy and Nonprofit Innovation (formerly the ASU Center for Nonprofit Leadership and Management), is recognized as a national leader in undergraduate and graduate nonprofit education, research and technical assistance. For more information, please visit: http://nonprofit.asu.edu.
It is commonplace to describe the nation as being divided in two, a nation of haves and have-nots, black and white, red states and blue states. But what if a more accurate description was a society in thirds: a lower, middle, and upper class, with education as the defining influence.
At UI, we were presented with this vision and have constructed a picture of what the state of Arizona looks like when split in thirds. The results are significant. Nearly 50% of all non U.S. citizens in the state are in the lower income third. Children in the upper income third are twice as likely to be in a married couple, family household than children in the lower income group, where single mother households outnumber married couple, family households. The Arizona Hispanic population, which makes up nearly a third of all residents, account for less than 10% of all Bachelor’s degrees or higher attained.
Education is a proven ticket to economic and social mobility. But inequalities in the system can prevent those in most need of increased education from getting the same chance.
ASU Professor Ariel Rodríguez knew students in his Program Planning course would love the chance to enjoy a 2.77-acre classroom with sunshine, waterfalls and artwork.
But he threw them a curveball in the form of a challenge at the Downtown Civic Space Park: Create events that inspire the people of Phoenix to join you here.
The course recently taught 20 students how to create, organize and oversee several community events that brought hundreds of residents and visitors to the park.
Students in the School of Community Resources & Development partnered with the City of Phoenix and ASU’s Parks and Recreation Student Association to offer the free activities. This included a big-screen outdoor showing of the movie “The Dark Knight,” complete with complimentary popcorn and refreshments, which drew a crowd of more than 200 people.
“We had an opportunity to see, literally 200 yards away from our College, how the theories we were learning in class could be put into practice immediately in the park,” says Samuel Richard, a senior in the College of Public Programs.
Rodríguez says, “The park is an ideal place to develop programs that can simultaneously impact people living at the Westward Ho, ASU students at Taylor Place, people coming from Tempe on the light rail…and other residents in the community.”
In the course, students learn the need to focus on planning event details such as equipment rental, security, weather contingency plans, waste disposal, marketing and venue seating.
“They even had to work out small details like making sure the grass in the park wasn’t watered shortly before the movie, or it would be wet where people were sitting,” says Rodríguez.
Students have also offered a gardening seminar for clients of an adult care facility operated by the Foundation for Senior Living in Phoenix. They arranged transportation to the park and taught the seniors to plant flowers which they were able to take home. Another event brought several seniors from the nearby Westward Ho to play board games.
For more information about the School of Community Resources and Development, visit http://scrd.asu.edu.
Manager of Media Communications
ASU College of Public Programs
Denisse Leon, who graduated from ASU in 2007, talks about her own journey to pull together her many interests and the idea that you can’t really make mistakes as a student—each “mistake” is just a new experience.
Denisse Leon moved to the United States about 6 years ago from Mexico City to attend ASU, where she was an Entrepreneurship Ambassador in the spring of 2007. She graduated in May with a bachelor’s degree in social and behavioral sciences, and is currently doing Americorps service at the National Farm Workers Center at El Mirage. She also works as a freelance web designer and marketing consultant, and plans to apply to the University of Oregon for a master’s in arts administration or intercultural service, leadership and management. Her main interests lie in helping promote the arts through different media and using art to create social change.
How do you blend the classroom experience with high-tech components to aid interactivity (with the teaching tools themselves) and participation?
For the past four years Decision Theater has provided students an enhanced learning experience. Not just students here at ASU, but groups as diverse as high-school students to post-graduate students to water managers.
This video was featured by Educause, a non-profit association which profiled this ASU facility as a creative learning environment.
As Dr. Deirdre Hahn explains,students are immersed in “an experiential very dynamic environment..a safe space that shuts off external distractions.”
The New American University pursues applied research that contributes to the public good, assuming major responsibility for the economic, social and cultural vitality of the community that surrounds it.
Improving the health status and health care of people in our community is a central part of this mission. People of Mexican background — a large segment of the population in Maricopa County, Ariz., for example — have a high prevalence of diabetes and experience an undue burden of diabetes-related complications.
To help address this health problem, Dr. Luis E. Zayas, ASU Assistant Professor of Social Work, will conduct a pilot study this summer to investigate how adults of Mexican ethnicity in Maricopa County — who recently were screened and diagnosed with T2 diabetes mellitus — seek health care for, manage, and cope with their diabetes in the community, given their access to health care, socio-economic resources, and cultural practices.
The goal is to better understand and learn from their experiences in order to develop culturally informed, community-based strategies to facilitate prompt medical care and proper self-management of diabetes for recently diagnosed adults in this population.
The pilot will involve semi-structured and structured interviews with adults of Mexican ethnicity in Maricopa County who have been diagnosed with diabetes in the past 3-12 months.
Results from this study will inform the development of health care interventions to be tested, in collaboration with various community stakeholders.
Manager of Media Communications
ASU College of Public Programs
Follow the College of Public Programs on Twitter! @coppasu
Matthew Whitaker talks about giving meaning to freedom and the work he does as an associate professor of History at ASU.
Matthew Whitaker is an associate professor of History at Arizona State University. He earned his B.A. in Sociology, B.A. in History, and M.A. in United States History, from ASU. He then attended Michigan State University in Lansing, where he earned his Ph.D. Professor Whitaker specializes in Modern U.S. history, African American history, the African Diaspora, Civil and Human Rights, sports history, popular culture and the American West. His research focuses on African American leadership, social movements, activism, and the struggle for racial, economic, and gender equality in American history and life. His articles have appeared in many scholarly journals and encyclopedias, and his latest book is entitled Race Work: The Rise of Civil Rights in the Urban West (University of Nebraska Press, 2005).
The Consortium for Science, Policy and Outcomes (CSPO) advances new ideas about the societal impacts of science and technology, and related policy problems. But like any mission-oriented research effort, we sometimes struggle to take these ideas and apply them in the real world. The realm of federal policy in particular, with its strong political forces, complex bureaucracies, and organizational inertia, seems a harsh environment for principled, intellectual arguments about how things could or should be.
One small idea, which we hope will grow, is to convene monthly meetings of program managers from agencies across the federal government. A program manager who disburses funding to researchers occupies an important, but often difficult position in the federal bureaucracy. On the one hand, they may have considerable influence on the way problems get framed, and on the way in which knowledge advances in particular areas. On the other hand, they may be limited by a variety of factors related to agency politics, the culture of particular scientific disciplines, and constricting performance and evaluation criteria.
Our main goal for this effort is to provide a forum for social learning among individuals who want to think differently about the funding and management of science and technology research. What are the best ways to link research outcomes with broader benefits? What innovations in program review can support this goal? There are many more such questions that program managers struggle with. It is our hope that through ongoing interactions with us and with each other, the people who actually implement science and technology policy can learn from each other, and that we can learn from them about how to frame our ideas in useful ways.
We held the first of these meetings last week, and judging by the level of enthusiastic discussion, the event was a success. Hopefully we can keep up interest, and broaden participation in a way that leads to a network of motivated and innovative science and technology policy professionals.
An Arizona State University program that helps parents transform their children’s educational experience has won the regional 2009 C. Peter Magrath University Community Engagement Award and is a finalist for the national award.
The program has “graduated” more than 7,000 parents of students attending 41 different schools, and indirectly impacted more than 24,000 low-income, minority youth throughout the greater Phoenix region since the program began three years ago.
Established in 2006, the C. Peter Magrath University Community Engagement Award recognizes the outreach and engagement partnerships of four-year public universities. The award program seeks to identify colleges and universities that have redesigned their learning, discovery, and engagement functions to become even more sympathetically and productively involved with their communities.
This award recognizes an extraordinary partnership between ASU and the Phoenix K-12 educational community. The program relies on collaborations with area school districts, as well as community leaders and community service organizations to operate and be successful.
Parents of K-12 students receive training through the nine-week program that creates a community where parents and teachers collaborate to improve each child’s educational environment, both at home and at school, so that all children can achieve their greatest academic potential.
With a focus on retention, graduation and academic success, the American Dream Academy instills an understanding of the value of attaining an education, and can offer a pathway out of poverty for many people. For information about the Center, visit http://cdcr.asu.edu.
Manager of Media Communications
ASU College of Public Programs
Follow the College of Public Programs on Twitter! Twitter (@coppasu)
Two Morrison Institute for Public Policy reports on domestic violence — Layers of Meaning (2005) and System Alert (2007) – prompted recent and ongoing reforms for the Arizona court system.“[The Committee on the Impact of Domestic Violence and the Courts] sub-committees were completely restructured. They are now more in accord with your report,” said Pinal County Superior Court Judge William J. O’Neil, one of the state’s authorities on domestic violence and chair of CIDVC, a standing Supreme Court panel.
“Your report was of enormous consequence to the courts and its impact cannot be overstated,” said O’Neil, citing an increase in prosecution, expediency of cases and improvements in both treatment and education.
Judge Wendy Million of Tucson Municipal Court, a member of CIDVC’s Best Practices Subcommittee, concurred. She and her colleagues used Morrison Institute findings as an outline for a new domestic violence guide for court professionals to be distributed in October.
“By incorporating the recommendations and findings of the two Morrison Institute reports into our guide, we hopefully have addressed issues specific to the Arizona criminal justice system — issues that the players themselves raised and improvements they suggested,” she said.
The two reports, along with other studies and public policy briefings, can be found on Morrison Institute’s Web page: (www.MorrisonInstitute.org).
Posted by Nicole Haas, Morrison Institute for Public Policy, ASU