RWU Seeking Innovative Projects for Community Partnerships

Faculty and students have taken on 337 projects such as market research, facilities design, website creation, graphic design

Historic preservation students examine unique characteristics of a former mill in Pawtucket.
The RWU Community Partnerships Center leverages faculty and student expertise for community partners on a wide-ranging array of projects, like this one where historic preservation students explored potential reuses and the rehabilitation of the former Conant Thread Factory in the Cities of Pawtucket and Central Falls,
By Edward Fitzpatrick

BRISTOL, R.I. ­­– The Roger Williams University Community Partnerships Center (CPC) is seeking project applications from local nonprofit organizations, government agencies and municipalities in Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.

CPC connects applicants with faculty and students in order to take on projects that will benefit the community while providing RWU students with hands-on, experiential learning.

To date, CPC has completed 337 projects with organizations in areas such as market research, facilities design, engineering assessment and design, educational curriculum creation, business planning, marketing and social media plans, historical research, technical and business writing, graphic design, museum exhibit research and design, website creation, public policy and economic impact assessment, and historic preservation planning.

“The Community Partnerships Center is an integral part of RWU’s attempt to become ‘The University the World Needs Now,’ ” RWU Interim President Andy Workman said. “The partnerships not only provide concrete benefits for our community, they also help prepare our students to become good citizens and valuable parts of the cities and towns that they will live in after graduation.”

Community partners have been pleased by past student contributions.

“We were pleasantly surprised by the overall professionalism of the students. In some ways, it even exceeded the professionalism that we see from some paid designers in the real world,” Pawtucket Central Falls Development’s Andrew Pierson said. “We have seen other colleges do this, and it is just a design exercise where there are ideas but they are not ‘real.’ We’re notoriously busy and we don't have the time for things that aren’t ‘real,’ but this program was. And I think that is what made it the best academic-level and university-level program or interaction we’ve ever experienced.”

Students have gained from the community partnerships.

“After being presented with several opportunities to work with and generate content for community partners, my eyes have been opened to the greater impact that our work and education can have in the real world – especially in our greater community,” said Nicholas Stanglewicz, a RWU student in the School of Humanities, Arts and Education.

Organizations that are interested in learning more about the CPC and/or applying for projects can visit https://www.rwu.edu/life-at-rwu/rwu-community/cpc/become-community-partner.

For more information, contact Angela Medeiros, Project Coordinator at the RWU Community Partnerships Center, at (401) 254-5211 or amedeiros@rwu.edu.