Dr. Beth Velde, director of public service and community relations at East Carolina University, has been named chair of the Council on Engagement and Outreach for the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities.
Velde, who served as chair-elect this year, will serve a one-year term as chair in 2014. She was elected during the annual meeting of the APLU held Nov. 10-12 in Washington, D.C. Velde also is a professor of occupational therapy in the ECU College of Allied Health Sciences.
The Council on Engagement and Outreach leads APLU’s efforts in the engagement of its constituent universities with communities. This community engagement focuses on addressing community issues through research, implementation of best practices, education and collaboration. The council works with APLU presidents, commissions and councils and other national organizations focused on community engagement.
The council – one of 10 within the APLU – comprises 14 university administrative and staff leaders responsible for extension, continuing education and public service functions at APLU member institutions and systems.
Key initiatives include developing methods to benchmark community engagement, promoting the scholarship of engagement, honoring national leaders in community engagement, and supporting universities that seek the Carnegie Foundation’s community engagement classification.
Last year, ECU was awarded the APLU’s prestigious C. Peter Magrath University/Community Engagement Award for its establishment and support of the Lucille W. Gorham Intergenerational Community Center. The center partners with West Greenville residents, ECU, the city of Greenville, Pitt Community College and other agencies to provide a comprehensive community-based system of service and care to residents.
The APLU is a research, policy and advocacy organization representing 219 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems and related organizations. It is the nation’s oldest higher education association with member institutions in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, and four U.S. territories.