California State University, Sacramento

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Anchor University Strategic Investment Grant Program

In his Fall 2018 address, President Robert Nelsen established the goal of establishing Sacramento State as an “anchor university.” As such, the University is committed to using its deep roots in the Sacramento region to develop relationships that are reciprocal and mutually beneficial and that will lead to long-term collaborations and partnerships that respond to complex community needs and challenges.

The Anchor University Task Force completed its work in Spring 2020 and in Fall 2020 the Anchor University Advisory Council (AUAC) was established. This Council has broad representation from campus units and is tasked with bringing the Task Force recommendations to fruition, responding to community needs, and creating inclusive and strategic partnerships with local and regional stakeholders. While the Council is still establishing its focus and initial year workplan, due to the generosity of the University Foundation at Sacramento State, the AUAC is able to offer Anchor Strategic Investment Grants for activities and projects that align to the Anchor University framework.

Any faculty member (tenured, tenure track, part-time), staff member, student, or student organizations is eligible to apply. To encourage deep connections within the community, applicants are required to engage with least one community partner (community organization, government agency, non-profit, school, etc.).

Recipients of first Anchor University Strategic Investment Grant:

  • High School Dream Builders: This partnership between Sac State’s Dreamer Resource Center and the Sacramento Family Unity, Education, and Legal Network supports Sac State students who will intern as “dream builders” to help inform young immigrants and their parents about options for attending college.
  • String Project: It expands a program with the Robla School District in which Sac State offers free or low-cost classes in violin, cello, and orchestra to children in some of the city’s poorest neighborhoods. Participants come to campus for group and private lessons from Music majors, progressing from beginners to musicians who perform for their families in the Music Recital Hall in Capistrano Hall.
  • Giving Voice to Youth Psychological Well-Being: The project is meant to improve the psychological health of youth attending Natomas Pacific Pathways Preparatory High School. Graduate Psychology students supervised by licensed clinicians will deliver an “intervention” program to students affected by issues including poverty, racism, ableism, and homophobia.
  • Workshops for Underserved Women Affected by Domestic Violence: Sac State Nursing students will use an approach known as meta-rehabilitation to help women at the nonprofit My Sister’s House deal with traumas including domestic violence and sexual assault to build resilience and achieve spiritual, emotional and physical growth.
  • Nutrition Education for Public Housing Residents: Dietetic interns will provide nutrition education lessons to two Sacramento Housing and Redevelopment Authority communities, Alder Grove and Marina Vista. Interns will lead cooking demonstrations and educate residents about such topics as healthy meals and snacks.
  • Planning a School-Based Health Center with Folsom Cordova Unified School District: Nursing students will conduct a health assessment and establish recommendations for a health center within the Folsom Cordova district. The district has identified a need for a center that would offer services including medical, dental and behavioral health programs via mobile vans or in school buildings.
  • Civil Engineering Writing Partners: Civil Engineering students will exchange letters with students at Elder Creek Elementary School in an effort to improve their communication and writing skills and stir interest in engineering. The program will culminate in a campus visit for the students that includes a tour and engineering demonstrations.
  • Barrio Art in the Community: Art students will gain teaching experience and tutor students from Washington Elementary School and the Washington Neighborhood Center. The course includes field trips to campus, museums, and events designed to contribute to the advancement of pre-K-12 students.

Application Requirements

  1. The proposed activities must connect to improved Sac State student success inside and outside of the classroom (e.g., are connected to a course, link to learning outcomes, incorporate a high impact practice, encourage student engagement and retention, or promote student well-being).
  2. The Proposed activities must advance equity, antiracism, and/or social justice in our community and/or on campus.
  3. All applicants should must at least one community partner (community organization, government agency, school, initiative, etc.) and describe how they will work collaboratively with them on project implementation.
    • This partner organization must provide a letter of support for the grant application.
  4. Projects must align with one of the following six sectors:
    • Pre-K - 12 Education
    • Health and Well-Being
    • Homelessness and Housing
    • Arts and Culture
    • Environment, Mobility, and Sustainability
    • Inclusive Economic Opportunity & Workforce Development

Preferred Grant Activities

  • The proposed activities expand opportunities for collaborative scholarship.
  • The proposed activities enhance Sac State students’ civic engagement skills.
  • The proposed activities augment a community partner’s research, evaluation, and/or service capacity.