Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change: Community Engagement

Cultural Center staff at Involvement Fair 2019

The seven Centers for Cultural Understanding and Social Change are a collaborative group that aims to make UIC a welcoming and inclusive place for all students, faculty and staff. The Centers are committed to student success, intercultural engagement, vibrant scholarship, and dynamic community partnerships.

Community Collaboration

Community engagement participants writing ideas

The Office of Community Collaboration (OCC) was formed to build upon and strengthen UIC’s current community engagement efforts.  OCC’s focus is to create infrastructure, institute channels to improve cross campus communication and collaboration, as well as to facilitate a unified philosophy and a set of values for community practices and partnerships.  OCC serves as a catalyst for true partnerships and reflects a commitment to establish reciprocal relationships and provide opportunities for partners to be involved in defining and, as necessary, redefining the terms of engagement and measures of equity.

Community Relations

CPS students work at the El Paseo Community Garden for part of UIC's STEM Scholars program in Pilsen on Tuesday, July 20, 2021.

The Office of Community Relations works to build and maintain relationships between UIC and the communities it serves. The office works with local civic, corporate and community organizations in addition to supporting internal constituents. We serve as a platform for internal and external stakeholders to exchange ideas, and promote local and regional economic development through raising awareness about opportunities. Community Relations works to engage all partners in helping UIC pursue its mission as a leading urban public research institution and the University of Illinois for Chicago.

Partnerships for Anti-racist Campus Transformation

Armani Lee, a COVID outreach supervisor, talks to a Mayfair resident outside the neighborhood Petco on Wednesday, April 21, 2021, in Chicago, Ill.

As COVID-19 continues its prevalence across our region, the need to coordinate university efforts is more important than ever. UIC’s multidisciplinary academic and research network, including that of our academic health enterprise of UI Health, is uniquely positioned to be astutely responsive to our community partners’ needs in ways that may directly address immediate concerns as well as set the stage for long-term partnerships.

With the support of the UIC School of Public Health, UIC -Partnerships for Antiracist Campus Transformation (UIC-PACT), was established. Housed in the Office of Diversity, UIC-PACT is a collaboration of members from across campus with the goal to identify various community needs and organize our university expertise and response.