NEW COLLEGE RECEIVES $750,000 GRANT FROM MELLON FOUNDATION; NCF and Cross-College Alliance will significantly strengthen community outreach and engagement

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NCF and Cross-College Alliance will significantly strengthen community outreach and engagement


(SARASOTA, June 19, 2019) – The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded a five-year, $750,000 grant to New College of Florida to support curricular and research initiatives that preserve local history, integrate social and racial justice work into artistic practice and teaching, and explore questions of special interest to the local community.


New College and the Cross-College Alliance in the Community will be headquartered at a newly created Office for Community Outreach and Engagement (COE) and will involve a multi-pronged collaboration with the other four institutions in the Cross-College Alliance: Ringling College of Art + Design, State College of Florida, University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee, and The Ringling Museum.


“We look forward to broadening our service as a convener, bringing together community members, service organizations, and our CCA partners to discuss local issues that may be addressed through arts and humanities education and community engagement,” says Dean of Outreach and Engagement Bill Woodson, who will oversee the new office. “We also welcome the opportunity to enhance the capacity of the CCA colleges to identify, respond to, and learn from the rich opportunities for engagement that are present in the Sarasota-Manatee region.”


Over the next five years, the CCA institutions will aim to add 15 to 20 courses that involve substantive community engagement. New College is planning three such courses for 2019-20.  The CCA institutions also plan to collaborate on a joint program whereby students cycle through internships or community service projects that expose them to different community-serving professions.


“This project will be transformative for New College and the other CCA institutions,” says President Donal O’Shea. “It builds on institutional links that previous Mellon support helped us create and embeds our colleges into the larger community as vitally important resources.”


In 2016, the Mellon Foundation awarded a five-year, $750,000 grant to New College for Connecting Arts and Humanities on Florida’s Creative Coast. That project has increased New College’s contributions to public discourse on humanities and arts, strengthened relations with local arts organizations, and established sustainable academic connections with colleges that comprise the Cross-College Alliance.


Founded in 1960, New College of Florida is a four-year public liberal arts and sciences college in Sarasota that prepares intellectually curious students for lives of great achievement. As the legislatively designated Honors College of Florida, New College offers nearly 40 undergraduate majors in arts, humanities, mathematics, social sciences, and natural sciences and a master’s program in Data Science.

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