GPI logo

 Global Perspective Institute Inc.

Dr. Larry A. Braskamp, President
260 E. Chestnut Street # 3307, Chicago IL 60611 312.420.1056     312.943.4457



For Immediate Release


Contact:          Larry Braskamp, GPI
Debra Humphreys, AAC&U
202-387-3760, ext. 422

National Coordinating Committee to Lead Broad-Based Effort Advancing Civic and Democratic Learning in Higher Education

Chicago, IL—December 1, 2010—The Global Perspective Institute recently announced the names of 12 national leaders appointed to a new Coordinating Committee who will lead a national effort on civic learning and democratic engagement in higher education.  The Coordinating Committee met for the first time on November 17, 2010 at the Department of Education in Washington, DC and, as part of the new initiative sponsored by the department, will work during the next six months together with staff members of GPI and the Association of American Colleges and Universities to craft a recommended national action plan to be submitted to the Department of Education and with recommendations for action by a variety of national and local stakeholders.

Members of the Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement Coordinating Committee include:

Derek Barker, program officer, Kettering Foundation

Richard Guarasci, president, Wagner College

Melissa Harris-Perry, associate professor of politics and African American studies, Princeton University

Donald Harward, president emeritus, Bates College, director, Bringing Theory to Practice initiative

Sylvia Hurtado, professor and director of the Higher Education Research Institute, University of California, Los Angeles

Eric Liu, co-founder, The True Patriot Network

Gale Muller, vice chairman of worldwide research and development, the Gallup Organization

Brian Murphy, president, De Anza College

Eboo Patel, founder and executive director, Interfaith Youth Core (IFYC)

Carol Geary Schneider, president, Association of American Colleges and Universities.

David Scobey , executive dean, The New School

Kathleen Maas Weigert, research professor of social justice and advisor to the provost’s Office on Justice and Service, Loyola University Chicago

“I am delighted with the members we have assembled on the Coordinating Council who will advise and help craft the national action plan for civic learning and democratic engagement,” said Larry Braskamp, project director and president, GPI.  “The members represent different areas of expertise, experiences, and national leadership and I look forward to working with them over the coming year.”  

In their first meeting, the council discussed two draft papers prepared as part of the project.  Second drafts of these papers will be posted to the project Web site ( after the next meeting of the Committee scheduled for early January, 2011.  The Committee will also establish five national roundtables to be held during the first three months of 2011.  These roundtables will bring together leaders and experts in a variety of areas, including organizations and foundations promoting civic learning and democratic practice; leaders of campus-based civic engagement centers and community-based learning and research programs; faculty leaders whose scholarship focuses on civic and democratic learning; college and university presidents; and public policy leaders, public higher education system leaders, and leaders of organizations representing private colleges and universities.

“This group of distinguished civic scholars and leaders will be invaluable in shaping the design of a national plan to elevate the importance of civic learning and democratic engagement as an expected part of every student’s college curriculum,” says AAC&U Senior Vice President Caryn McTighe Musil.  “Each member of the Coordinating Committee has devoted his and her professional lives to deepening the knowledge, skills, and commitments needed if democracy in the United States and elsewhere is to thrive,” Dr. Musil explained.


For additional information about the initiative, see


The mission of the Department of Education is to promote student achievement and preparation for global competitiveness by fostering educational excellence and ensuring equal access. The Department of Education is funding this project to support a national dialogue that will culminate in the development of an action plan that would inform federal efforts.


About the Global Perspective Institute

The Global Perspective Institute Inc. was established in 2008 to study and promote global holistic human development, especially among college students.  The GPI administers, with assistance from Central College, the Global Perspective Inventory, a self-report survey that is now being used in over 70 colleges, universities, and third party study aboard organizations.  Dr. Braskamp, president of GPI, has held administrative positions at University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Illinois at Urbana- Champaign and at Chicago, Loyola University Chicago, and CHEA, and is the co-author of several books, including Putting students first:  How colleges develop students purposefully and numerous scholarly articles and reports. He currently is also a Senior Scientist at The Gallup Organization as well as a Senior Fellow at AAC&U, and serves on the Board of Trustees of Elmhurst College.

Information about the GPI Inc. and its programs can be found at

About the Association of American Colleges and Universities

AAC&U is the leading national association concerned with the quality, vitality, and public standing of undergraduate liberal education. Its members are committed to extending the advantages of a liberal education to all students, regardless of academic specialization or intended career. Founded in 1915, AAC&U now comprises 1,200 member institutions—including accredited public and private colleges and universities of every type and size.

AAC&U functions as a catalyst and facilitator, forging links among presidents, administrators, and faculty members who are engaged in institutional and curricular planning. Its mission is to reinforce the collective commitment to liberal education at both the national and local levels and to help individual institutions keep the quality of student learning at the core of their work as they evolve to meet new economic and social challenges.
Information about AAC&U membership, programs, and publications can be found at