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Community Partnerships Center

Paying it Forward: Town of Bristol and CPC Leaders Offer Best Practices on Community Projects in College Towns

June 2, 2015

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As a result of nearly a dozen joint community projects accomplished to date, leaders from the Town of Bristol, R.I., and the Roger Williams University Community Partnerships Center joined forces in Washington on Monday, June 1, to share best practices on cooperative town/university projects with attendees at the International Town and Gown Association Annual Conference.

Hundreds of participants – from elected officials and city planners to university administrators, student affairs professionals and college students – convened at George Washington University to learn how to create innovative university/community partnerships and strengthen town/gown relationships in college towns.

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CPC Plan to Transform Abandoned Pawtucket / Central Falls Mill Earns APA-RI Award

December 11, 2014

BRISTOL, R.I. – The Rhode Island chapter of the American Planning Association (APA) will award a group of 30 Roger Williams University students (some now recent alumni) and three faculty members for their success in creating a comprehensive redevelopment plan for an abandoned manufacturing property, the former site of The Conant Thread Company and Coats & Clark Mill Complex located on the border of Pawtucket and Central Falls. Through the Community Partnerships Center, business, architecture and historic preservation students worked together with Commerce RI, the Pawtucket Foundation and the two cities to produce a plan aimed at preserving and revitalizing the mill site, an area that has been vacant since 1964.

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Student Research Digs Up Dirt on Newport’s Pre-Revolution Historic Properties

December 9, 2014

BRISTOL, R.I. – Murder, bankruptcies, 18th century interracial marriages – not the standard fare a group of RWU historic preservation students expected to uncover in their recent field research of Colonial Era buildings in Newport. Yet they were as enthused as they were stunned to discover such tales.

“These kinds of finds opened eyes in many ways to the lives of these buildings,” says School of Architecture, Art and Historic Preservation adjunct professor Catherine Zipf. “These are Colonial buildings – they predate the Revolution. We observe and think about how they are today, and how they began, but we don’t think about the almost 200 years in between.”

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With an Assist from RWU, Tiverton to Launch Visioning Process at Stone Bridge

May 6, 2014

TIVERTON, R.I., May 6, 2014 – In a collaborative undertaking to launch this month, the Town of Tiverton will join forces with students and faculty from Roger Williams University to lead a community visioning and design process for the former gas station located in the historic Stone Bridge village.

A team of students taking part in a summer course titled Community Engaged Design will take on the project, which was identified through an application from the Town of Tiverton to the University’s Community Partnerships Center. With more than 100 projects in just three years since its launch, the CPC offers specialized expertise to assist nonprofits and municipalities in solving challenges, while allowing students to gain real-world experience.

The Town of Tiverton acquired the former gas station in February and asked the CPC to help create a community-wide discussion on the options for reusing the structure or demolishing it in order to replace with open space or other public facilities.

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Governor Chafee to Deliver 2014 Commencement Address

April 7, 2014

BRISTOL, R.I.  – In celebration of the growing array of projects in which RWU students and faculty are partnering with civic and nonprofit organizations to improve quality of life in the State, Rhode Island Governor Lincoln D. Chafee will address the Roger Williams University class of 2014 and receive an honorary degree during Commencement exercises on Saturday, May 17.

“Because so many of our Class of 2014 graduates have participated in project-based learning experiences across Rhode Island’s cities and towns, Governor Chafee’s participation in Commencement will be particularly meaningful,” says RWU President Donald J. Farish. “For me, it is simply an honor and a privilege to invite someone I admire and respect to join us on the Commencement platform to celebrate our students’ crowning achievement – graduation.”

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Editor's Cut: RWU Magazine Issue #9

November 22, 2013

BRISTOL, R.I. -- From exploding stars to floating gelatinous orbs to rediscovering history, the latest issue of RWU Magazine is bursting with stories that bring readers to the heart of the action at Roger Williams University -- all from the comfort of your own home. Careful readers may notice some changes to our pages (as well as a handful of additional pages we snuck in).

As we approach our 10th issue of RWU, we invite you to share your story ideas and reactions to what you read and see in the current issue. Email and let us know what you think!

Of course, for those who just can't get enough, we're happy to provide some additional reading to tide you over while our spring issue is in the works:

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After Early Success, University Expands Effort to Reduce Costs, Encourage Real-World Learning

September 11, 2013

BRISTOL, R.I. – One year after launching the Affordable Excellence initiative to confront the most pressing challenges facing higher education – increasing costs, rising debt and the job-readiness of graduates – Roger Williams University President Donald J. Farish said today that early stages of the strategy have exceeded expectations, and he pledged to redouble the University’s efforts in the coming year.

“Through Affordable Excellence, we are committed to keeping tuition costs down and to creating ‘job-ready’ graduates who benefit from exposure to both liberal arts and professional studies, augmented by project-based learning reflective of the professional world,” Dr. Farish said during his annual State of the University address to faculty and staff. “Ultimately, this means stronger, more competitive graduates who will succeed both professionally and as responsible citizens of the world.”

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CPC Feasibility Study Lauded as Bristol Lands Funds for Maritime Center

September 10, 2013

BRISTOL, R.I. – Just six months after a team of students from Roger Williams University presented their findings from an economic feasibility study to transform a historic Naval Armory on Bristol Harbor into a welcome center for visiting boaters, Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) announced an $861,000 Boating Infrastructure Grant from the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service that will bring the Bristol Maritime Welcome Center to life and boost the local economy.

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Fair Housing for All

April 10, 2013


NEWPORT, R.I., April 10, 2013 – Nearly 200 advocates, activists and supporters united in Newport this week to celebrate the 45th anniversary of the Fair Housing Act and the forging of a new partnership between Roger Williams University, the Roger Williams University School of Law and the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. RWU Law is just the second law school to join the National Fair Housing Collegiate Partnership, and RWU is the only university in Rhode Island to join HUD’s campaign to cultivate a new generation of fair housing experts.

“Our work today defines our tomorrow, and I can think of no better way to show that commitment than to work with Roger Williams University in identifying the fair housing leaders of tomorrow,” said HUD General Deputy Assistant Secretary Bryan Greene.

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CPC Kicks Off Spring Semester with 28 Projects across Rhode Island

February 15, 2013

BRISTOL, R.I., – The Community Partnerships Center at Roger Williams University starts the spring semester with 28 projects, serving nearly a dozen Rhode Island communities, including community development and Main Street revitalization initiatives in Providence, Woonsocket and Central Falls.

A key component of the University’s Affordable Excellence initiative, the CPC pairs students and faculty with local nonprofits, municipalities and other organizations to tackle community projects that often require specialized expertise or additional resources. Students apply classroom learning and gain real-world experience by engaging in community projects such as economic development research and planning, public policy formulation, architectural design and urban planning.

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