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JMU’s Vision

To be the national model for the engaged university: engaged with ideas and the world.

This new vision was part of the strategic planning work that was led by the Madison Future Commission in 2013. It was approved in January 2014 by the university’s Board of Visitors as our guiding statement up to and through 2020.

Simply put, our central pursuit in the coming years as we seek to fulfill our mission will be to become the national model for what it means to be engaged.

JMU understands engagement as consisting of three facets - Engaged Learning, Community Engagement and Civic Engagement. We define them below to provide some structure and clarity for the members of our community. We recognize that there is plenty of overlap between the three. We also realize that not all engagement-related work fits neatly into one of the categories. While we know that the definitions are necessary, we focus our understanding of the concept by emphasizing community and individual relationships as the center of our uniqueness as an engaged university. Faculty-student relationships, relationships with the local and global community and partnerships that foster deep and purposeful learning are the focus of our vision.

And, for JMU, engagement means:

  • Engaged Learning: Developing deep, purposeful and reflective learning, while uniting campus and community in the pursuit, creation, application and dissemination of knowledge.

  • Civic Engagement: Advancing the legacy of James Madison, the Father of the Constitution, by preparing individuals to be active and responsible participants in a representative democracy dedicated to the common good.

  • Community Engagement: Fostering mutually beneficial and reciprocal partnerships, ranging from local to global, that connect learning to practice, address critical societal problems and improve quality of life.

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