As a partner in the project “Towards a European Framework for Community Engagement in Higher Education” (TEFCE), our University participates in creating a framework for initiating, promoting, and strengthening the involvement of higher education institutions in the community. The project resulted in the creation of the TEFCE Toolbox, an instrument through which universities can identify places and ways to improve their community activities, and within this project, our University was given a unique opportunity to identify, assess, and further develop institutional and individual capacities in community engagement.
One of the key results of the project at this stage is the collection of 50 practices – examples of University involvement in the community that are mapped by a combination of the processes of the implementers on the one hand, and institutional self-evaluation on the other. Practices were evaluated through seven thematic dimensions: teaching and learning, scientific research, knowledge and service exchange, students, university engagement activities, institutional policies, and peer review. All practices are examples implemented by university teaching and non-teaching staff, students, and members of our wider community (civil society associations, etc.).
The results of the process of collecting and processing community engagement practices through the “TEFCE Toolbox” showed that the University of Rijeka has an undoubtedly strong and positive impact on the community in which it operates, both in terms of economic development and wider social benefits. This, of course, began back in 2019 and continued in 2020, during which Rijeka proudly holds the prestigious title of the European Capital of Culture, and the University of Rijeka is the holder of some of the main activities and programs, various ECOC 2020 activities including teaching and non-teaching staff and, of course, students.
The University of Rijeka, following its traditional role of a socially engaged university, continues to implement initiatives focused on the needs and requirements of the community.
The Institutional Report of the University of Rijeka can be accessed via the following link.