Democracy & Civic Action

Programs designed to foster civic engagement and strengthen connections within communities.

  • Democracy & Civic Action Week

    Events explore diverse perspectives about the role of democracy and civic engagement in the United States. Departments, programs, and organizations across campus will present a wide-range of activities to engage both campus and community members in reflecting on their rights and responsibilities that are fundamental to creating a civil society. UAA celebrated its first Democracy & Civic Action week in 2018.

    2019 DCA Week

  • Campus Vote Project

    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.  Much of the Campus Vote Project UAA efforts take place in sections of Fundamentals of Oral Communication (COMM 111), with students creating informative materials and encouraging voter registration on campus.  Through these efforts, nearly 400 people have been registered to vote (as of Sept. 2017).  As a result of our outreach, UAA has been designated a Voter Friendly Campus.

  • Dialogues for Public Life

    The 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. Co-sponsored by the Center for Community Engagement & Learning and The Ethics Center at UAA, the initiative was started when UAA was invited to participate as a member of a national cohort with The Kettering Foundation. The Kettering Foundation is a research organization with an interest in working with institutions of higher education that “seek to understand the challenges and opportunities associated with the public engagement and the public deliberation of pressing local or national issues.”

    Learn More about Dialogues for Public Life


voter registration


Urban in Alaska Conference

A conference and networking opportunity for faculty, students, and community members to engage in dialogue together about community-enaged issues.  Featuring a keynote address, break-out sessions, and the popular "rapid fire" faculty presentations.

2018 Conference

Think Tanks

A non-profit agency presents a challenge or issue, and attendees brainstorm solutions for the organization. Students, faculty, staff and community members join us to assist the agency through contributing thoughts and ideas to the discussion.

  • 2018-19
    Thursday, September 20, 2018
    11:30 am - 12:45 pm | LIB 307
    How Can We Safely Reduce the U.S. Prison Population?
     UAA School of Social Work & Department of Communication
    Coalition for Democracy & Civic Action & ACLU of Alaska
    Thursday, November 15, 2018
    11:30 am - 12:45 pm | LIB 307
    How Can Anchorage Strengthen its Climate Action Plan?
    UAA Institute for Circumpolar Health Studies
    Municipality of Anchorage
    Thursday, February 21, 2019
    11:30 am - 12:45 pm | LIB 307
    How can birds develop eco-minded students and community members?
     UAA School of Education
    Anchorage School District
    Thursday, March 21, 2019
    1:00 - 2:15 pm | LIB 307
    How can we make parks safer and more welcoming for Anchorage's young teens?
     UAA Justice Center & Department of Geography & Environmental Studies
    Anchorage Parks and Recreation
    Thursday, April 11, 2019
    11:30 am - 12:45 pm
  • 2017-18
    How should we plan for action on climate change in Anchorage?
    Municipality of Anchorage & The Alaska Center
    How can we create strong, sustainable, and equitable food systems in Alaska?
    Alaska Food Policy Council
    What does a solution to homelessness in Anchorage look like?
    United Way
    How can we support and celebrate linguistic and cultural diversity?
    Cook Inlet Native Head Start
    Can we make public spaces in Anchorage safe and welcoming for everyone?
    Municipality of Anchorage
    Fair Housing: Whose responsibility is it?
    US Housing and Urban Development and Alaska Legal Services
  • 2016-17
    What Contributes to a Welcoming Community?
    Welcoming Anchorage
    Does society owe anything to the wrongfully convicted? 
    Alaska Innocence Project
    What can our education system do to serve the needs of Alaska Native students?
    UAA College of Education
    How should Anchorage respond to challenging needs of those abusing alcohol/drugs? How can health care professionals best advocate for care for this population?
    Anchorage Gospel Rescue Mission
    What does food security mean to you, and how should we strengthen the food system here?
    Alaska Food Policy Council
    How can we better connect homeless individuals with social services across Anchorage?

    Bean's Cafe

  •  2015-16
    How do we provide enough nutritious food for every Alaskan?
    Food Bank of Alaska
    How can adults in our community get the tech skills they need?
    Anchorage Public Library
    How can STAR & UAA/APU work together to serve the collegiate population in Anchorage?
    How can we engage business-corporate leaders to invest in early care & learning?
    How can we build a stronger sense of community through Anchorage neighborhoods, parks, and trails?
    Anchorage Park Foundation
    How can the community work together to ensure that schools are culturally responsive and respectful? 
  •  2014-15
    How can organizations create gender neutral workplaces that promote pay equity and opportunity?
    YWCA Alaska
    How can we better help those experiencing mental illness get connected to the services they need?
    Covenant House AK
    How can our community bridge the civil legal justice gap?
    Alaska Legal Services Corporation
    How can our community support the transition and integration of refugees resettling in Anchorage?
    RAISE & Catholic Social Services
    How can we spur housing development in Anchorage that is affordable to our workforce?
    Housing Anchorage
    What is the best way to convey information about exposure to harmful chemicals in our food, products, and environment in a way that empowers people to take action?
    Alaska Community Action on Toxics
    Chronic school absence in Anchorage: What can we do about it?
    United Way of Anchorage
    Serving the homeless: walking the ethical tightrope between compassion and enabling
    Catholic Social Services

 think tank



Community Engagement Forum

 Annual Forum to recognizing the civic engagement accomplishments from the past year.  The Forum features awards to students and faculty and highlights of our community partnerships, including the presentation of the Selkregg Community Engagement & Service Learning Award and Dr. Alex Hills Engineering & Civic Engagement Award. A poster session reception follows the awards program and provides an opportunity to speak with Community Engaged Student Assistants about their faculty-community partner projects.  

2020 Community Engagement Forum
Friday, April 24
2:30 - 4:00 pm | LIB 307