NAC&U Selects Dr. Ira Harkavy as 2015 Ernest Boyer Award Recipient

Harkavy-Headshot-2-10-187NAC&U is pleased to present its 5th annual Ernest L. Boyer Award to Dr. Ira Harkavy, associate vice president and founding director of the Barbara and Edward Netter Center for Community Partnerships at the University of Pennsylvania. The official awards presentation will take place at the annual AAC&U Meeting, January 21-24, 2015, in Washington, DC.

To honor the legacy of Ernest Boyer, NAC&U recognizes an individual who has made significant contributions to higher education and whose ideas will be celebrated for generations to come. Dr. Harkavy was selected because of his dedication to university-driven community engagement.

“I am extraordinarily honored and touched to be the recipient of this award,” said Dr. Harkavy. “Ernest Boyer was someone I knew, someone who inspired me–and he played a most important role in shaping our thinking and the work that we do at the Netter Center.”

NetterCenterLogoAs director of the Netter Center since its 1992 founding, Dr. Harkavy has helped to develop academically based community service courses and university-assisted community schools in the University of Pennsylvania’s local community of West Philadelphia. Working with faculty, more than one thousand undergraduate and graduate students each semester have tackled critical community issues relating to the environment, health, the arts and education. The Netter Center’s approach has become a national model of university civic engagement.

“We are honored to present the Ernest L. Boyer Award to Dr. Harkavy who boldly championed the idea that universities can drive positive change through civic engagement,” said Nancy Hensel, NAC&U president. “This way of thinking has brought numerous benefits to communities across the globe and has changed the way university students interact with and understand their place in the world.”

More about Dr. Harkavy:

An historian with extensive experience building university-community-school partnerships, Dr. Harkavy teaches in history, urban studies, and Africana studies, and in the Graduate School of Education. Dr. Harkavy is a member of the National Science Foundation’s Committee on Equal Opportunities in Science and Engineering (CEOSE Vice Chair); Harvard College National Advisory Board for Public Service; International Consortium on Higher Education, Civic Responsibility, and Democracy (US Chair); the Anchor Institutions Task Force (Chair); Widener University Board of Trustees; and a Senior Fellow of the Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics.

NetterCenter1Executive Editor of Universities and Community Schools, Dr. Harkavy has written and lectured widely on the history and current practice of urban university-community-school partnerships and strategies for integrating the university missions of research, teaching, learning, and service. His recent books include Dewey’s Dream: Universities and Democracies in an Age of Education Reform (2007,co-authored with Lee Benson and John Puckett), Higher Education and Democratic Culture: Citizenship, Human Rights and Civic Responsibility (2007, co-edited with Josef Huber), The Obesity Culture: Strategies for Change, Public Health and University-Community Partnerships (2009, co-authored with Francis Johnston), and Reimagining Democratic Societies: A New Era of Personal and Social Responsibility (2013, co-edited with Sjur Bergan and Hilligje van’t Land).

Among other honors, Dr. Harkavy is the recipient of the University of Pennsylvania’s Alumni Award of Merit, Campus Compact’s Thomas Ehrlich Faculty Award for Service Learning, and a Fulbright Senior Specialist Grant. Under his directorship, the Netter Center for Community Partnerships received the inaugural William T. Grant Foundation Youth Development Prize awarded by The National Academies and a Best Practices/Outstanding Achievement Award from HUD’s Office of Policy Development and Research. In addition, with Dr. Harkavy’s and the Netter Center’s leadership, Penn has twice received the Presidential Award in Higher Education Community Service (2008 and 2012), and tied for the number one ranking as “Best Neighbor” University (2009) by the national Survey of Best College and University Civic Partnerships.

Dr. Harkavy received his B.A., M.A., and Ph.D. in History from the University of Pennsylvania.