NAC&U Boyer Award Recipient Devotes Career to University-Community Relations

The New American Colleges and Universities

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

In the 1960s the University of Pennsylvania (Penn), located in West Philadelphia, was certainly “in” the city, but no one thought of it as “of” the city. West Philly residents accused the University of expanding its campus and operations without any thought to the impact on the residents, mostly renters, who were forced to move without compensation. The relationship that existed was largely that of mistrust.

Ira Harkavy, NAC&U’s 2015 Boyer Award recipient, remembers this well as an undergraduate student at Penn who protested this treatment of neighbors. Today the university has a completely different relationship with West Philly due in part to the work of Dr. Harkavy and his colleagues at the Barbara and Edward Netter Center for Community Partnerships at Penn.

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