Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name


Organizational Unit

Morgridge College of Education

First Advisor

Cheryl D. Lovell, Ph.D.

Second Advisor

Ryan E. Gildersleeve, Ph.D.

Third Advisor

Judy Marquez-Kiyama

Fourth Advisor

Nicholas Cutforth


Engagement, Partnerships, University engagement, University partnerships


Over the years, American public university outreach and engagement programs and activities have been defined and managed in many different ways and at varying levels within the institutions. Some universities clearly define complex outreach and engagement objectives and visions in their mission and throughout the fabric of the institution; while other university's outreach and engagement objectives and visions are less refined and not as evident to the casual observer (Bonnen, 1998). While much has been studied and developed in terms of establishing and managing a university's outreach activities, very little research has been conducted with respect to the social, procedural, and collective process of engagement--the two-way social interaction and consensus-building between academia and their external partners. More specifically, there appears to be a gap in the knowledge regarding the processes and criteria that university engagement staff use to identify, evaluate, and communicate program expectations (engagement management) that support its engagement activities with external entities (individuals, groups, organizations, businesses, etc.).

This instrumental case study examines one public, land-grant university outreach and engagement organization and the criteria and processes staff use to identify, evaluate, and communicate the program expectations (philosophical ideals, internal and external influences, costs and benefits, and potential alternatives) of planned engagement activities or potential partnerships with external entities. One objective of this study is to examine how university engagement staff approach the process of building relations with potential partners that are external to the institution. A second objective is to examine the criteria and processes used by university engagement staff to establish program expectations for potential engagement activities and partnerships. Another objective of this study is to provide recommendations--based on best practices--with respect to how university engagement staff may build partnering relations by identifying, evaluating, communicating program expectations prior to establishing a formal partnership with entities external to the institution.

Publication Statement

Copyright is held by the author. User is responsible for all copyright compliance.

Rights Holder

Frederick Powers


Received from ProQuest

File Format




File Size

285 p.


Higher education administration, Higher education, Educational administration