Kirk and Sharon Profit Social Justice Fellowship

Imagining America (artists and scholars and public life), a consortium of universities and colleges defines public scholarship as scholarly or creative activity that joins serious intellectual endeavor with a commitment to public practice and public consequence. It includes:

  • Scholarly and creative work jointly planned and carried out by university and community partners;
  • Intellectual work that produces a public good;
  • Artistic, critical, and historical work that contributes to public debates;
  • Efforts to expand the place of public scholarship in higher education, including the development of new programs and research on the successes of such efforts.
    — “Scholarship in Public,” the Report of the Tenure Team Initiative of Imagining America

As clarified by IUPUI, Public Scholarship when “contrasted with one-way applications of faculty expertise to community problems, public scholarship (instead) frames and addresses issues in ways that result in meaningful public application, or transformation, and promotes community-engaged methods of discovery and dissemination of gained knowledge.” (IUPUI) The Social Justice Fellowship program will provide individual or a team of EMU full-time lecturers, tenure track and/or tenured faculty an opportunity to engage in public research focused on issues of justice (racial, gender, religious, economic, etc.). The Social Justice Fellowship reinforces and elevates EMU’s Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement as well as EMU’s University mission, “to benefit the local and global communities.”

2020 Awardee

Mary-Elizabeth B. Murphy, Associate Professor of History

Project Abstract: Riding in Solidarity: Jewish Americans, African Americans, and the Fight Against Interstate Bus Segregation [PDF]

Mary-Elizabeth Murphy, an associate professor of history and women and gender studies at Eastern Michigan University, has been named the inaugural recipient of a social justice fellowship funded by longtime EMU supporters Kirk and Sharon Profit.

The fellowship will enable Murphy to conduct research on her book project, entitled, “Before the Freedom Riders: African Americans, Bus Companies, and Black Protest Politics.” Continue reading on EMU Today.

Skip Section Navigation