But recently, she said, UD’s Community Engagement Initiative in the Office of the Provost has developed a Civic Action Plan to more clearly articulate and advance that vision.
“The plan also complements the University’s strategic plan for
strengthening inclusion and diversity as we dream about a climate in
which students, faculty and staff are able to recognize the
contributions and perspectives of different cultures and genders,”
Morgan said. “We need to integrate that knowledge into our everyday work
… with the communities we serve.”
George Watson, dean of the College
of Arts and Sciences and president of the Delaware Arts Alliance board
of directors, also praised the benefits—to the University, its students,
the arts in Delaware and the community—of UD’s engagement with
organizations and cultural institutions statewide.
“I can’t overstate how much we value these strong partnerships,” he said.
The arts help bridge divides and bring people together in their
common humanity, Watson said: “In the College of Arts and Sciences, we
like to say that we illuminate the heart and mind, and that’s exactly
what the arts do.”
Also celebrating the launch of the Partnership for Arts and Culture
were Delaware Lt. Gov. Bethany Hall-Long, who spoke of a commitment by
Gov. John Carney’s administration to supporting the arts and humanities,
and U.S. Rep. Lisa Blunt Rochester of Delaware, who praised the
initiative for recognizing “the power of the arts” in bringing people
together and as a force for change.
The event opened with welcoming remarks by Profs. Dan Rich, director,
and Lynnette Young Overby, deputy director, of the Community Engagement
Initiative. A professor of theatre and an internationally recognized
dancer and choreographer, Overby also serves as artistic director of
“Women of Consequence.”
Overby “is passionate about this
partnership, and we are all the beneficiaries of that passion,” Rich
said. “She is, without a doubt, a woman of consequence.”
The partnership now has about 70 members, representing the University
and Delaware arts and cultural organizations. Speakers at the launch
urged the audience to “spread the word” and encourage others to join the
partnership as it continues to grow.