University of Memphis Community
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University administration, faculty, staff and students work to cultivate relationships which link the mission to external communities, as well as broaden the university‚Äôs role as an advocate and partner for economic and community development in Memphis and the Mid-South region. 

Read the Strategic Plan Partnership Goals.

The University participates in collaborative partnerships across Memphis and the Mid-South region, including but not limited to:

  • Community Nonprofit Organizations
  • Economic Development with Business and Industry Leaders
  • Government Leaders
  • Health Institutions
  • Memphis and Shelby County Schools

Strengthening Partners and Communities

Strengthening collaborations with area organizations and businesses accelerates economic, health, and community development across Memphis. It also ensures for future innovation and growth for our region. 

The Strengthening Communities Initiative, managed by the School of Urban Affairs and Public Policy, is one of the best examples of the University's commitment to these goals.

Since 2008, this grant-making collaboration with the Community Foundation of Greater Memphis and the United Way of the Mid-South has funded neighborhood based organizations and projects across the region. See project highlights here.

Community organizations in Crittendon, Desoto, Fayette, Lauderdale, Shelby, Tate, Tipton and Tunica counties are eligible to apply. Faculty and student teams assist the organizations' projects with content specific expertise. Small grants of $2,500 are available for the nonprofit organizations alone while larger $18,000 grants are available to partnerships between the organizations and University faculty.

The characteristics of the neighborhoods represented range greatly, although all are focused on addressing issues typical of urban redeveloping communities. Projects are chosen by the organizations based on resident participation. 

Grants are given to projects from six categories: economic development, education, health, housing, safety and transportation. All funded projects must be neighborhood based and community led.  


 "A fantastic model of collaboration: thinking partners who aren't echo chambers." -Margaret Heffernan

Partnership Spotlight

working together 

Working Together
U of M students team up with churches and community groups to restore a historic Memphis neighborhood.

South Memphis

Planning for the Future
U of M students team up with community groups to bring fresh groceries to a South Memphis area in need.


Engaged Scholarship Faculty Committee

Featured Partnerships

Funding and Program Support

Strategic Plan


Partnership Resources

University Neighborhood Resources


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Last Updated: 1/9/13