YSU to Host Inaugural Community Engagement Conference

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The YSU Office of Community Engagement will host its first community engagement conference from noon to 4 p.m. April 18 in Kilcawley Center. 

YSU students, faculty, staff and community partners will share presentations on their efforts to engage with the community.

The event will begin with a luncheon and interactive session by keynote speaker Bill Lawson, executive director of the Mahoning Valley Historical Society. He will speak to an invited audience of community partners about the value of partnerships in furthering organizational goals. 

Breakout sessions from 1 to 3 p.m. will include oral and poster presentations. The afternoon will wrap up with a session featuring a panel discussion that will focus on the value of community engagement. A complete agenda is available here.

Those presenting at the conference responded to proposals that went out to campus and community partners earlier this year. Those selected will deliver oral or poster presentations or speak about their work in an idea exchange session.

“We were so excited to receive such a wide variety of proposals that provide a small snapshot of the work happening in our community,” said Lexi Rager, associate director of the Sokolov Honors College.

Topics to be discussed throughout the day include the collaborative mural projects completed between YSU and Youngstown CityScape, Lit Youngstown and the Andrews Ave Business Group; a student research project on opportunities to focus on the repopulation of the Youngstown area; and presentations by partners such as the Ohio Living Vivo Center and MyPath Mahoning Valley. 

Attendees will be able to stop by Sight for All United’s vision van, learn more about YSU’s community engagement platform (YSU PenguinPulse) and attend a breakout session on the Honors Magazine Editing & Production seminar.

“I was told when I came in not to bother with college students. College students were not interested in what we were doing,” said Chary Greier Hively, who coordinates volunteers for Community Hospice and will be part of the conference panel. “YSU has proven that wrong beyond a shadow of a doubt.”

Members of the community can attend any conference session from 1 to 4 p.m. There is no cost to attend. Parking is available in the Wick Avenue parking deck for $5.

Published by The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.