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Home » Discover Rackham » ‘Arts of Citizenship’ Becomes ‘Rackham Program in Public Scholarship’

The Rackham Graduate School is pleased to announce that the Arts of Citizenship program will be renamed the Rackham Program in Public Scholarship as of August 2016. Arts of Citizenship was founded in 1998 to promote sustainable campus-community collaborations in the arts, culture and humanities between U-M faculty and students and community partners. Since becoming a program of the Rackham Graduate School in 2010, Arts of Citizenship has widened its multidisciplinary reach, garnering student participation from 51 graduate degree programs across campus.

Over the past six years, Arts of Citizenship has served 225 graduate students through four distinct programs: the Institute for Social Change (ISC), Graduate Student Grants in Public Scholarship, the Engaged Pedagogy Initiative (EPI), and the Mellon Public Humanities Fellowships.

Carol A. Fierke, Rackham Dean and Vice Provost of Graduate Education, describes the importance of these programs as “scholarly and creative endeavors that give our diverse students not only professional development and career opportunities, but also opportunities to collaborate with the community in the work of the university.”

The new name, Rackham Program in Public Scholarship, reflects the expansion of these programs beyond just the arts and culture disciplines to the social science and STEM fields. It also more recognizably situates U-M in the national public scholarship movement, a movement that extends research and pedagogy into spaces beyond the university as a means of building new knowledge and sharing ideas that enrich higher education and the broader community.

Matthew Countryman, Associate Professor of History and American Culture, has been Faculty Director of Arts of Citizenship since 2007. For the 2016-2017 academic year, Associate Dean Deborah Keller-Cohen will serve as interim director during his sabbatical.

“Arts of Citizenship has been at the forefront of efforts to promote public scholarship and community engagement at the University of Michigan for nearly two decades. As the Rackham Program in Public Scholarship, we are thrilled to be entering into a new phase of our work with doctoral students interested in engaging with local communities and the broader public,” says Professor Countryman. “Providing students with the opportunity to develop the skills needed for successful public projects is, we believe, essential to the development of comprehensive professional and career development within graduate education.”