Pinpointing activities: Office of Community Engagement launches engagement map

Community engagement map screenshotView print quality image
The community engagement map features more than 350 activities, heavily concentrated in metro Indianapolis but also spreading across the country and internationally.

IUPUI faculty and students participate every year in activities that enhance lives in the Indianapolis community and beyond.

That's not just a tagline or a talking point; it's documentable work that anyone can explore, thanks to a new map launched by the IUPUI Office of Community Engagement.

On the map -- dive in yourself here -- are points representing more than 360 activities, heavily concentrated in Indianapolis and within the I-465 loop but stretching across the country and as far away as Africa. Each one represents an activity or where an activity's community partners are located, with details about faculty, schools/centers involved and the scope of the work. Among all the activities, more than 5,000 IUPUI students have participated.

"The map further demonstrates IUPUI's commitment to Central Indiana," said Amy Conrad Warner, vice chancellor for the Office of Community Engagement. "It provides essential information about initiatives underway, assets in the community and partners who contribute to a common goal."

The map, funded by an IUPUI Welcoming Campus Initiative grant, was developed in partnership with The Polis Center and includes social and demographic data from SAVI, one of the nation's first and largest community information systems.

For example, selecting a point just southwest of downtown brings up a window about SEAL Indiana, a statewide dental program that provides preventive oral health services for children who do not have adequate access to dental care. The Indiana State Department of Health and IUPUI provided startup funding for the program, which began in 2003. The School of Dentistry, naturally, is the school listed as the participant, with areas of focus including education, government and public safety, health and wellness, and social issues.

School of Dentistry assistant professor Armando Soto is one of two faculty members listed, and clicking on Soto's name brings up lines on the map connecting to other sites where he is involved in community activities -- a web of engagement, if you will.

A toolbar on the map allows further pinpointing; activities can be filtered by information such as start date, number of students involved or community organizations involved. Adding layers allows for demographic, education, income and health data by neighborhood in Marion County that provides further context to the community's opportunities and challenges.

The map will be updated periodically as more information is added to the Collaboratory, a platform that captures IUPUI's community engagement efforts.