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Visiting Scholar Barbara A. Holland on Community Engagement

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Internationally-known scholar, Dr. Barbara A. Holland, spent several days on campus last week discussing community engagement with UT faculty, administrators, and community partners.

“Community engagement is the nexus of knowledge sharing and co-creation of knowledge between the academic world and other worlds,” said Holland, referring to external entities including government, business, industry, small business, nonprofit, schools or neighborhood organizations.

Holland is an internationally recognized expert in organizational change in higher education with specialized interests in the institutionalization and assessment of community engagement, and was also on the national review panel that assigned UT’s Carnegie Community Engagement Classification.

Holland speaking

Photo and video by Nichole Stevens. For more photos please visit

“We’re in a time of great change in higher education and academic cultural values are changing along with it,” said Holland.

Holland has held senior administrative positions at Portland State University, Northern Kentucky University, University of Western Sydney and University of Sydney. In government-related roles, she was Director of the Learn and Serve America National Service-Learning Clearinghouse for seven years and Visiting Director of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s Office of University Partnerships for two years during the Clinton and Bush administrations. As a researcher and consultant, she has been an on-campus adviser to more than 100 higher education institutions in the USA and internationally regarding community engagement institutionalization and leadership of change, and she has authored many publications of note, including the creation of the Holland Matrix for Institutionalization.

As a scholar and leader, Barbara was a founding board member and 2011-12 Chair of the International Association for Research on Service-Learning and Community Engagement (IARSLCE), and also was a founding member of the National Review Board for the Scholarship of Education, the National Advisory Panel for the Carnegie Elective Classification for Community Engagement, and the Australian Universities Community Engagement Alliance (now called Engagement Australia) which in 2008 named her one of their first two Honorary Fellows. In 2006, she received the IARSLCE Award for Research Achievement. She is Executive Editor of Metropolitan Universities journal and serves in editorial roles for five other refereed journals. Barbara had been a lead faculty member for the Engagement Academy for University Leaders, sponsored by four major higher education associations, since it began in 2008.

Her current research and practice interests include the design of national and international frameworks for professional development of academic leaders, analysis of the strategic importance of community engagement to teaching, learning and research quality, and the development of comprehensive data systems for monitoring and measuring engagement’s impacts and outcomes. Barbara’s Bachelor and Master’s degrees are in Journalism from the University of Missouri and her Ph.D. is in higher education policy from University of Maryland. She resides in Portland, Oregon.Holland visit

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