Center for Community Engagement & Learning

The Center for Community Engagement & Learning (CCEL) serves as the intersection of student learning, faculty research and creative activity, and community engagement.

Learn about CCEL


"Its commitment to community engagement and the Public Square."


The Center for Community Engagement & Learning (CCEL) serves as the intersection of student learning, faculty research and creative activity, and community engagement. CCEL connects academic programs with community needs to use scholarship and action for the mutual benefit of the University and the State, its communities, and its diverse peoples.

The Center is committed to fostering resilient communities through social, economic, and environmental justice in community-campus partnerships. Our work focuses on six core themes: Health & Well-Being; Positive Child & Youth Development;  Arts, Language & Culture; Food System;  Our Alaskan Environment;  and Access to Justice.


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2017 Selkregg Award Recipient
Jamie Elswick, WWAMI

Events & News

Upcoming Events

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CCEL Public Scholars

A generation's debt inspires UAA's Public Service Scholars to open a dialogue for collaborative solutions

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In Fall 2018 CCEL's Public Scholars took part in the "Up to Us" Campus Competition where they researched and designed a tailored campus campaign to educate their peers on the national debt and encourage collective action. Kobe Scott, Laruen Criss-Carboy, and Moira Pyhala. (Photo by James Evans / University of Alaska Anchorage)



  • Special Initiatives

    CCEL collaborates with several special initiatives and partnerships across campus.

    Alaskero Partnership is a workgroup of Filipino American UAA faculty and community members seeking to increase visibility, vitality, and sense of community among Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (API), especially youth

    Campus Vote Project UAA strives to increase voter registration, education and turnout, with a special focus on college students.  The project began during the spring 2016 semester and has continued each semester since.

    Civic Eats Initiative is focused on developing, promoting, and recognizing Community-University partnerships in creating strong, sustainable, and equitable community food systems.

    Dialogues for Public Life program was created to facilitate and develop the capacity of the campus and local communities to discuss challenging social issues in a productive and meaningful way.

    Urban in Alaska is an exploration of Anchorage  as an urban area with urban issues in what is more typically considered a rural state. Urban issues in Anchorage are similar to other cities: poverty, homelessness, access to affordable housing, mental illness, substance abuse, sustainability.

    Resilient Communities Initiative Community resilience offers a useful lens for assessing and working with the needs of communities such as Anchorage. Viewing communities as complex and dynamic living systems allows for creative solutions to emerge, new solutions that may lie in understanding systemic relationships among community issues found in our city.  The Resilient Communities initiative proposes to invest $30,000 in 2018-19 to bring faculty, students, and community partners together to foster community resilience through partnerships in several thematic areas. 

  • ENGAGE Social Issues

    Food Security, Youth & Education, Affordable Housing & Neighborhood Development, Health & Mental Health, Environment & Sustainability - Find out what's happening on campus and in the community around these social issues.

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  • Civic Engagement Certificate

    UAA students can earn a Civic Engagement Certificate along with his or her major. This 30 credit Certificate prepares students to become active, effective, ethical citizens in their professional and personal lives.

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Carnegie Foundation Community Engagement Classification Seal

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Second Bridge Award


Selkregg Award


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Student Opportunities

  • Civic Engagement Certificate

    UAA's Certificate in Civic Engagement prepares students to become active, effective, ethical citizens in their professional and personal lives. Students develop practical skills to link their learning to community involvement through service-learning experiences, internships, community-based research, and creative activities. This program highlights scholarly, community-based engagement in students' major coursework while making connections to academic, personal and civic development of skills and competencies.

  • Public Service Scholars

    The CCEL Public Service Scholars program is funded by partial scholarships from the University of Alaska system. This application certifies that you are prepared to devote 5-10 hours per week to supporting community engagement as a liaison between the UAA campus and community networks and coalitions in particular thematic areas (e.g. Food Systems, Our Alaskan Environment, Health & Well-Being, Positive Child & Youth Development, Arts, Language & Culture; Access to Justice).

    Activities that you may be involved with can include but not be limited to:

    • Community-based research through academic courses; supporting faculty-community engaged projects or research.  
    • Policy analysis or issue briefs on assigned issues.
    • Participation in Think Tanks and Urban in Alaska Conference during academic year.
    • Construction and maintenance of Social Media/Community Information Hubs for issue areas above.   


  • Community Engaged Student Assistants

    What is a Community Engaged Student Assistant (CESA)?

    Community Engaged Student Assistants support students, faculty, and community partners in four key areas: 

    • Developing community partnerships with faculty;
    • Recruiting, placing, training and coordinating service-learners for courses;
    • Developing creative projects, applying technical expertise, and collecting research data;
    • Providing direct service/research to the community partner(s). 

    Why be a CESA?

    • Have a meaningful experience working with faculty and community members;
    • Hands-on opportunities utilizing your major to work with the local community;
    • Administration Scholarship Awards available for eligible students.


  • Dr. Alex Hills Engineering & Civic Engagement Award

    This award encourages UAA undergraduates in Engineering to disseminate engineering knowledge and practice for the benefit of society.  For this $2,500 award, undergraduates will initiate a service project that solves engineering and technology-based problems in partnership with local organizationsand under the supervision of a faculty mentor.



  • Second Bridge Award

    The Second Bridge Scholarship Award encourages UAA undergraduates enrolled in any degree-seeking program to pursue a structured but non-traditional educational experience that expands their educational horizons.  Crossing a second bridge requires a commitment to either an international or a domestic setting that will push the boundaries of traditional education and bring the promise of a richer and deeper experience.





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Contact Us

Phone: (907) 786-4062

LIB 211N
Center for Community Engagement & Learning
University of Alaska Anchorage
3211 Providence Drive
Anchorage, AK 99508

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