Public engagement in 2021 | Public engagement


Public engagement in 2021

UM Social’s audience engagement and impact efforts have significantly increased their reach in 2021. Thanks to well-established projects such as the Michigan Minds podcast and Wolverine Caucus events, as well as new outlets , including a series of live panels, the revamped Michigan Impact monthly e-newsletter, daily external media spotlights featuring faculty, and more. Public engagement has continued to bring to life the breadth and depth of faculty expertise at the University of Michigan.

With over 43,000 podcast streams from the 98 episodes released, over 4,000 views of crucial conversations, over 100,000 open email newsletters, and countless social media engagements showcasing faculty work and thought leadership – our communities have remained up to date and informed of the immense breadth of faculty expertise and commitment to improving the public good.

Here are some highlights of public engagement and the impact of 2021:

Michigan spirits

With 98 episodes released featuring 106 faculty members, Michigan Minds continued to grow in popularity, reach and impact. Now in its fifth season, the Faculty Podcast amplifies crucial research being conducted at UM and demonstrates the dedication of our faculty to serving our communities through public engagement. In 2021, there were over 43,000 downloads and streams of the podcast on a range of topics, including the role and responsibilities of social media, drug therapies to fight COVID-19, racism and mental health.

Collaborative series

To highlight the importance of topics such as COVID-19 and Sexual Assault Awareness Month, Public Engagement & Impact has coordinated and collaborated with units across campus to create a special series of Michigan Minds episodes:

  • COVID-19: variants, vaccines and various impacts of the current pandemic
    More than 18 months after the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, questions continue to arise about the virus’s mutation rates, vaccination and mitigation measures. Experts from across the university share their views on virus transmission and mutation, vaccinations and boosters, the need for the mask, drug therapy to treat the virus, preventive measures for children, and more.
  • Prevention of gunshot wounds
    While the University of Michigan launched the new Institute for Gun Injury Prevention in 2021 to generate knowledge and advance innovative solutions that reduce gun injuries – a public health crisis resulting in more 100 deaths per day in the United States – experts at Public Engagement & Impact spoke to the Institute about their research on school safety, safe storage of firearms in rural communities, response in emergency rooms, youth violence prevention, risk assessment, safety programs aimed at reducing youth suicide and the role of art and design in raising awareness and impact.
  • Women in STEM
    To highlight the essential role women and girls play in science and technology, Public Engagement & Impact spoke with several women working in STEM fields at UM. From studying mathematical models for treating cancer to natural language processing, gun injury prevention and more, the breadth and depth of the impactful research being conducted by women in STEM at UM have a significant impact.
  • Sexual Assault Awareness Month
    Through education, empowerment and support, the UM community is committed to creating a protective environment for survivors of sexual assault and providing essential resources to all who need them. This series features experts from the University Health Service (UHS), the Division of Public Safety and Security (DPSS), the Sexual Assault and Prevention Awareness Center (SAPAC), and Michigan Medicine. Find out how you can help reduce stigma and prevent violence, and find out what resources are available to help survivors heal.

Listen to the best Michigan Minds episodes

Crucial conversations

Recognizing the need for transparent conversations on health and social disparities, disproportionate impacts of the pandemic, climate change and mental health, Public Engagement & Impact has launched a new round of live discussions. Crucial Conversations brought together expert faculty, graduate students and undergraduates having transparent discussions on these issues and more, sharing their expertise and personal experiences. The four-event series drew over 1,100 live viewers and the tapes of the conversations were viewed an additional 3,000 times in total. In addition, Public Engagement & Impact published a recap article for each conversation, which reached 2,000 viewers.

Michigan Impact

The Michigan Impact newsletter has provided updates to lawmakers, alumni, and other interested stakeholders throughout the state of Michigan for nearly eight years. In October 2021, in collaboration with the UM Government Relations Office, Public Engagement & Impact led the revitalization of the newsletter by introducing a new template, improving the mechanism for tracking openings and interactions with e -mails, and increasing the publication schedule from quarterly to monthly to maintain a lasting dialogue with the public and maximize the amount of impactful content shared with our communities. The first three newsletters were opened more than 100,000 times.

2021 A year of impact in Michigan

Wolverine Caucus

In ongoing collaboration with Government Relations, Public Engagement & Impact has helped plan, promote and deliver written and video recaps for Wolverine Caucus virtual events in 2021. Interact with Wolverine Caucus members and expand the reach of programs, Various forums provide valuable information to communities of world-class talent from UM’s faculty. See this year’s Wolverine Caucus events:

Faculty testifying

With more than a dozen faculty members testifying before Congress in 2021, federal lawmakers continue to seek UM faculty to bring their expertise and knowledge to help inform federal policies. Testifying before congressional committees is one way for professors to engage in the federal legislative process. Improving their knowledge and advocacy efforts help inform community members of their commitment to positively impact change in Ann Arbor, across Michigan, across the country and around the world.

President’s Award for Public Engagement

The President’s Awards for Public Engagement recognize the commitment and contributions of UM faculty members to making a meaningful impact on society through national and state leadership services and efforts to address challenges. that our communities face every day.

From encouraging nominations to amplifying the work of laureates, Public Engagement & Impact works closely with the Office of the President to heighten the importance of public engagement of faculty and celebrate those who are dedicated to serving residents. from Michigan and the world through exceptional education, research and scholarship provided to our communities to improve the public good.

Below are a few articles on the President’s Awards for Public Engagement in 2021:

The Faculty of Public Engagement scholarship

In its second year, the Public Engagement Research Fellowship, managed by the Center for Academic Innovation in partnership with on-campus public engagement units, continued to foster faculty engagement at UM. Public Engagement & Impact works closely with the Center for Academic Innovation, encouraging applicants and implementing engagement projects directly with fellows. By serving on the advisory board and speaking in studio experience sessions, the Audience Engagement and Impact staff play an important role in helping faculty conduct effective audience engagement work. .

In the 2021 cohort, there are 17 professors supported by the Public Engagement Faculty Fellowship. Here’s how some of the faculty members were promoted by Public Engagement & Impact this year:

Spotlight on external media

Through the daily promotion of referenced professors in the national and local external media, Public Engagement & Impact continues to elevate the expertise of the faculty of the institution and emphasize the importance of sharing knowledge with the public. Make sure to follow unified messaging on Twitter and connect with us on LinkedIn to keep abreast of the topics and issues on which UM professors weigh and how their work responds to societal challenges around the world.


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