Department of Community Sustainability, Community Outreach & Partner Specialist
I serve as the Department of Community Sustainability's (CSUS) off-campus academic outreach - community partners specialist emeritus (retired), on assignment in Traverse City. I help to link and support CSUS students, staff and faculty to many research, teaching, and service community-university partnerships and community sustainability opportunities in Northern Michigan and, from time to time, statewide.
In recent years I've had the privilege of working closely with CSUS faculty emeritus colleagues Professors George Rowan and Jim Bingen, as part my department/university field assignments and outreach affiliations including “Livable Communities through Vital Aging” in affiliation with AARP Michigan and the Bay Area Senior Advocates (BASA) - Grand Traverse Region; “Poverty Reduction Initiative in Northwest Michigan” (with more than a dozen public and private sector stakeholders serving low financial resource constituents, friends and neighbors); The “Grand Vision” – a citizen-led regional six county mobility-transportation, food and farming, energy efficiency, housing, natural resources, quality growth and investment regional placemaking; “Freshwater – Knowledge Economy" + Watershed Center - Grand Traverse Bay environmental education and regional community stewardship and economic development coalition.
In addition, I have been CSUS and MSU's representative and institutional member to the Traverse City Area Chamber of Commerce, Northwest Michigan Food & Farming Network, City of Traverse - City Opera House & MSU Wharton Center for Performing Arts, Goodwill Industries of Northern Michigan - Food Rescue Board of Directors; Grand Traverse Conservation District's Grand Traverse Stewardship Initiative; Traverse Bay Children's Advocacy Center; United Way of Northwest Michigan's Citizen Action Team; and, Grand Traverse County Department of Human Services' Grand Traverse Pavilions Foundation Board of Directors.
Examples of my various outreach campus assignments have included serving as the CSUS department's representative for the MSU Energy Transition Plan (campus-wide) + Grand Vision Northwest Michigan Energy Network university-community partnership in cooperation with the Assistant Vice President for Operations (from the Office of the Executive Vice President for Administrative Services) and MSU's Office of Campus Sustainability.
I am a very proud Spartan both as a CSUS (Resource Development) MS graduate (1983) and a James Madison College BA graduate (1973).
And I wish to especially continue to invite my home department CSUS’ students, staff and faculty, along with colleagues and students from across the MSU East Lansing campus, along with MSU Extension educators in all 83 counties, who may need away-from-campus support and assistance of any kind with your community-capacity building coursework, applied research (including Plan B and dissertation preparation), questionnaire/survey design (SurveyMonkey software) and away-from-campus discovery, service and learning opportunities, to please contact me in care of:
Michigan State University North - Community Partners
phone: 231 218-9947
1910 Arrowhead Drive, Traverse City, MI 49686-2003
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A Sampler of “MSU North Community Partners – Department of Community Sustainability” Outreach Discoveries, Events, Projects, Partnerships, and Applied Research
“Creating Opportunities Summit” November 6, 2013: A regional Grand Vision – Framework of Our Future, Northwest Michigan Council of Governments, and Traverse Bay Poverty Reduction Initiative (PRI) for “Families on the Edge: Designing Communities that Work” (Tom Emling; summit planning committee member and energy savings network co-chair)
“Community Dialogue - Creating Opportunities” Conversations for Social Equity and Community Sustainability: Grand Vision and Traverse Bay Poverty Reduction Initiative Recommended Reading and Web Resources 2013: Housing (January); Healthy Food (February); Transportation & Mobility (March); Energy Savings (April): (Tom Emling; chair, compiler and editor)
“Northern Michigan Community Placemaking Guidebook: Creating Vibrant Places in Northwest Lower Michigan” 2012 – 29pp A Grand Vision Growth & Investment Network, Northwest Michigan Council of Governments, and MiPlace.org publication. (Tom Emling, guidebook contributor)
“Farm Route to Prosperity Summit” February 2012 (fourth annual) Grand Vision Northwest Michigan Food and Farming Network “Thank You and Post-Summit Feedback” online questionnaire (Tom Emling; evaluation chair and annual summit survey author, designer, editor and reporter)
“Poverty Reduction Initiative to Prosperity Recovery Impact (PRIs): Reaching Out to Our Low and No Income Friends, Neighbors and Families” - A Community Partnership Bulletin of Michigan State University’s Department of Community, Agriculture, Recreation & Resource Studies (CARRS): September 2008 (Tom Emling, co-author with George T.Rowan, MSU CARRS Professor, and Diane K. Emling, Northwestern Michigan College Sociology Instructor and Michigan League for Public Policy/MLPP Board of Directors member)
“Poverty Insight Project Survey and Reports” General Findings & Take Home Messages + Survey Methods Summary: Employment & Wages; Health; Education & Training; Housing; Children; Social Attitudes; Transportation & Mobility; Older Residents” - Traverse Bay Poverty Reduction Initiative’s (PRI) findings from more than 1,600 individuals and families receiving community services from Northwest Michigan’s Antrim, Benzie, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, and Leelanau Counties – June 2007 (Tom Emling, survey team member, data co-compiler, report designer, and principal report editor)
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More information- Department of Community Sustainability
Thomas's currently serves as the Department of Community Sustainability’s (CSUS) off-campus academic outreach - community partners specialist, on assignment in Traverse City. he helps to link and support CSUS students, staff and faculty to many research, teaching, and service community-university partnerships and community sustainability opportunities in Northern Michigan and, from time to time, statewide.