ERIC Number: ED485285
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2004-Apr
Capitalizing on the Potential of Minnesota's Rural Campuses. Seeking Solutions for Greater Minnesota's Future
Manning, Monica M.; Campbell, Candace; Triplett, Thomas J.
Center for Rural Policy and Development
Rural regions across the nation are threatened by declining populations, slowing economies, and legislative power transfers to urban and suburban regions. The very survival of colleges located in these rural regions is at stake. The potential for these rural campuses to survive and thrive via more far-reaching collaboration with their communities and better-focused missions, strategies, and operations must be examined thoroughly, efficiently, and promptly. This research project addresses the role of rural colleges and universities associated with the higher education systems in Minnesota in terms of economic development. Specifically, the research intends to answer the question: What potential does the presence of regional campuses hold for rural communities in facilitating economic development activities? The research methodology drew on data and information from local and national resources to define and apply theoretical constructs and a framework. Successful and emerging models and best practices are described with findings analyzed and adapted for relevance and possible application to Minnesota's rural regions. Metrics are suggested for rural campuses to use to assess the impact of their economic development activities. "Rural campuses" in Minnesota are clearly defined. Seven recommendations are made for capitalizing on the potential of these rural campuses, ranging from implementing targeted strategies to proposing innovative institutional models. Roles for policy makers and leaders from the state level to the campus and community level are addressed. In particular, local communities are encouraged to articulate their expectations to their local colleges and to work with academic leaders to ensure that the region receives the full contribution an institution of higher education can make to fostering more productive economies.
Descriptors: Campuses, Rural Areas, Economic Development, Rural Schools, College Role, Public Policy, Evaluation Methods, Economic Impact
Center for Rural Policy and Development, 600 S. Fifth Street, Suite 211, Saint Peter, MN 56082. Tel: 877-787-2566 (Toll Free); Fax: 507-934-7704; Web site: http://www.ruralmn.org.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Higher Education
Authoring Institution: Minnesota State Univ., Mankato. Center for Rural Policy and Development.