Message from the Vice Provost

Kwesi Brookins, Vice Provost for University Outreach and Engagement

Celebrating Science and Scholarship

Like many units here at Michigan State University, much of the work we do at University Outreach and Engagement happens under the radar, in quiet spaces like conference venues and classrooms.

That’s why I love this time of year. We get to play “outside,” starting with MSU Science Festival in April. Throughout the month, community members are invited to attend free events celebrating and exploring science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics.

Adults and children can choose from 200 age-appropriate activities, ranging from statewide astronomy nights to developing film with beer, creating edible ice cream aquifers, and learning about robots, recycling, and regenerative medicine.

The fun continues May 24-25, when the 40th Annual Science Olympiad National Tournament returns to MSU’s campus, where it all began. This tournament represents the highest level of science competition for middle and high schools in the nation. Teams representing all 50 states will compete in 23-plus events representing STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) disciplines. The tournament also affords us the opportunity to expose a diverse group of student competitors to our amazing MSU campus.

In addition to these events targeting future scientists and the broader community, we are pleased to offer new community engagement opportunities for graduate students, faculty, and academic staff.

This spring, UOE piloted the Urban Community Engagement Fellows (UCEF) Program in collaboration with MSU’s Graduate School. Beginning next fall, the program will pair a multidisciplinary team of MSU graduate students with Lansing-area community partners to collaborate on community-identified projects aimed at revitalizing the city of Lansing. We are accepting applications for the 2024-2025 cohort until March 29.

UOE also is accepting applications for the Community-Engaged Research Fellows Program, a yearlong, cohort-based, faculty and academic staff development opportunity for up to four early- and mid-career faculty and four academic staff to strengthen their community-engaged research (CER) skills, develop CER projects in partnership with communities, and produce scholarly projects. The application deadline for 2024-2025 cohort is March 29.

This is indeed an exciting time to be part of University Outreach and Engagement, as we connect with the broader community, the nation, the city of Lansing, and with our MSU graduate students, academic staff, and professors. Through these events and interactions, we all are enriched by the opportunity to forge enduring connections with diverse communities near and far.

Kwesi Brookins Signature

Kwesi Brookins,

Vice Provost for University Outreach and Engagement

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