Fund for Positive Engagement

From Campus Compact Headquarters

Fund for Positive Engagement


Over the past two years, longstanding political and social rifts in the United States have become deeper and more overtly hostile, embittering our already polarized public life. Various groups and individuals on our campuses and in our communities have experienced identity-based threats and marginalization that have led to heightened levels of fear and anxiety within campus communities. Students whose political views differ from the majority of their peers have come to fear social ostracism. The intensification of these phenomena harms students, interferes with the achievement of higher education’s mission, and threatens the health of our democracy.

Faculty, administrators, students, and their partners are working to address a variety of challenges: balancing the right to free speech with the need to cultivate learning environments in which all students can be successful, supporting students whose safety and well being are threatened by public policy or rhetoric, responding to attacks on academic freedom, and cultivating spaces in which all students can constructively build relationships and exchange ideas with one another across differences of all kinds–including ideological differences.

The purpose of the Fund for Positive Engagement is to catalyze experimental responses to challenges arising from this new climate.

Campus Compact is committed to higher education’s public purposes and its role in building democracy. We recognize the immediate need to respond and innovate—and to connect institutions of higher education committed to repairing and preventing division and polarization. Institutions participating in this effort will contribute to the development and documentation of both preventive and solution-oriented interventions to build strong and diverse communities on and off campus.

Our goal is to provide our members with resources to enable small-scale, short-term experiments; reveal promising practices; and share what is learned from these innovation efforts across our network and beyond.

Fund Recipients

University of Alaska Anchorage, AK Salem State University, MA Marietta College, OH
University of Central Arkansas, AR University of Maine at Augusta, ME The College of Wooster, OH
Arizona State University, AZ Michigan Technological University, MI Oklahoma State University, OK
California State University at Northridge, CA Wayne State University, MI Lehigh University, PA
California State University, East Bay, CA University of Minnesota Rochester, MN University of South Carolina Upstate, SC
Colorado State University, CO University of Montana (Missoula), MT The Citadel, SC
Yale University, CT Wake Technical Community College (Wake Tech), NC James Madison University, VA
University of Connecticut, CT Hastings College, NE George Mason University, VA
Florida State College at Jacksonville, FL Southern New Hampshire University, NH Saint Michael’s College, VT
Mercer University, GA Rutgers University – Camden, NJ Renton Technical College, WA
Saint Mary’s College, IN Bard College, NY University of Washington Seattle, WA
Tulane University, LA Syracuse University, NY Western Technical College, WI
University of New Orleans, LA Wagner College, NY University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, WI
St. Norbert College, WI