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Sept. 7, 2021

Van Egeren elected president of Engagement Scholarship Consortium

Laurie Van Egeren, MSU interim associate provost for University Outreach and Engagement (UOE), will be the next president of the Engagement Scholarship Consortium (ESC).

A portrait of Laurie Van Egeren.

Van Egeren will be the first woman to lead the ESC and the second president from MSU. Her term of office runs from October 2021 through 2024.

ESC is an international academic association that focuses on the advancement of scholarship-based university-community engagement as part of a continuing dialogue on the nature of knowledge and the role of academic institutions in society. ESC is comprised of 41 member universities across the United States and one international member.

UOE’s mission of advocating for community-engaged scholarship dovetails closely with ESC’s role as a forum for such dialogue.

In fact, MSU played a key role in the founding of ESC. University Distinguished Professor Emeritus and former MSU Associate Provost for University Outreach and Engagement Hiram E. Fitzgerald was its inaugural president (2009-2015).

As Van Egeren takes the helm of the ESC in October, she will be joined by University Outreach and Engagement colleague, Burton A. Bargerstock, executive director of the Office for Public Engagement and Scholarship and director of Communication and Information Technology, who has been appointed to serve as the ESC’s communications committee chair.

Van Egeren conducts engaged research funded by NSF, NIH, state government, and foundations, including state evaluations of afterschool programs and childcare consultation programs; early childhood science education; youth-driven spaces; parent programs for children diagnosed with autism; and programs to increase STEM college entry among African American students. 

She also serves on the leadership team of the NSF-funded Center for Advancing Research Impacts in Society and the Executive Committee of the Commission for Economic and Community Engagement of the Association for Public and Land-grant Universities.

“Dr. Van Egeren has provided leadership across a variety of research-based outreach and engagement initiatives nationally and at her alma mater, MSU, for nearly two decades,” said Dr. Samory T. Pruitt, vice president for Community Affairs at The University of Alabama and outgoing ESC board president. “Laurie has served with distinction as an institutional member representative to the ESC Board of Directors, and I look forward to seeing where she leads the Consortium in its next chapter of this important and life-changing work.”

“Engaged scholarship emerges from close, reciprocal partnerships between communities and higher education collaborators. What could be more important than integrating scientific knowledge with community knowledge to create meaningful impacts that make a difference for people, the environment, and society? I’m thrilled to work with this esteemed group of colleagues and institutions to advance ways to bridge differences among disciplines and among ways of knowing, and to address the institutional and systemic challenges that can get in the way of making transformational change.”

“It is rewarding to see Dr. Van Egeren’s exceptional leadership capabilities recognized at this level by the Engagement Scholarship Consortium, the primary organization for university-community engaged scholarship,” said MSU Provost Teresa K. Woodruff, Ph.D. “We are also delighted that Dr. Van Egeren will continue her outstanding leadership as interim associate provost for University Outreach and Engagement. We commend Dr. Van Egeren and Mr. Bargerstock for their capabilities and contributions in advancing university outreach and engagement – not only at MSU, but nationally.”

By: Kelly Mazurkiewicz