Greater Madison

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More than 100 Years of Partnership

James Madison University owes its origins to the citizens of Harrisonburg and Rockingham County. An intense lobbying effort to convince the Virginia General Assembly that the new state school should be located in Harrisonburg was organized by men and women whose family names still appear in the local phone book today. In March 1908, when the news came that Harrisonburg was chosen over 28 other cities and towns vying for the institution, the town erupted with celebrations.

The 100-year partnership between the school and the community has been a terrific success. The university has grown to great prominence and--just as those local lobbyists had hoped 100 years ago--the Harrisonburg community has prospered too. 

As we enter this partnership's second century, Madison and the Harrisonburg community are now deeply intertwined. JMU students volunteer in the local community's schools as tutors and train to be Virginia's top educators. Students reach out in nearly every civic organization in the area. Faculty and staff members volunteer in local churches and civic organizations, etc., and community leaders sit on JMU boards, attend athletic and cultural events, and have helped build every new phase of Madison's beautiful campus. 

Greater Madison was established in 1971 and exists to advance a mutually beneficial relationship between Madison and the community. Join Greater Madison today and become a partner with JMU in discovering new ways to strengthen those ties and help to make a difference in the lives of our community members. 

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