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Hartwick College Awarded Grants to Enhance Civic Engagement, Innovation Efforts

Written By Editor on 7/19/23 | 7/19/23

ONEONTA, NY (07/17/2023) Hartwick has received two grants totaling $10,000 from the Community Foundation of Otsego County to expand civic engagement and innovation at the College.

The Community Foundation is a nonprofit public charity that brings together financial and human resources to address challenges and increase opportunity in Otsego County. Each year, the foundation awards grants to nonprofit organizations in the Otsego community to support efforts to strengthen the community; the nonprofit sector; and assist those in need of support.

"We are very grateful to the Community Foundation for its support and commitment to innovation and social progress in our region," said Hartwick College President Darren Reisberg. "The Hartwick experience - for students, faculty, staff and the external communities with which we connect - is about both inquiry and impact. These grants support both, allowing us to be a catalyst for positive change on campus and in our community."

A $5,000 grant to Hartwick's Institute of Public Service will support three main civic engagement activities to strengthen connections between young people in Otsego County and local government. The grant will allow the institute to conduct a voter registration and education campaign aimed at college and high school students in Otsego County. The funding will also support two "get to know your candidates" events in October - one featuring Oneonta City Council candidates and the other, Otsego County candidates. The institute is also looking to use the funding to support an essay competition for area high school students focusing on civic engagement.

The College's Griffiths Center for Collaboration and Innovation (GCCI) is the recipient of the second grant. The $5,000 matching award will help fund the next steps in realizing a vision of Hartwick College's Stevens-German Library as an active student-centered and community engagement space. Along with the Student Success Center, which is also embedded in the library, the space will become a hub of innovation, creativity, and support.

"We are pleased to present these grants to Hartwick," said Jeff Katz, executive director of the Community Foundation. "The Community Foundation has been impressed by the new energy at Hartwick and its commitment to strengthening the community. Civic engagement and innovation are essential to the future of our region, and by supporting these programs at the College, the foundation is ensuring our community's ongoing strength and vibrancy. Helping Hartwick students develop the skills and knowledge they need to be leaders in the 21st century is important work and we are proud to partner with Hartwick."

About the Institute for Public Service:

The newly established Hartwick College Institute for Public is a nonprofit, nonpartisan, regional political institute dedicated to state and local government, civic engagement, and legal studies. The institute seeks to create synergy between local government officials in Otsego, Chenango, Delaware, Herkimer Madison, Montgomery, Oneida and Schoharie Counties; develop pathways for students to meaningfully engage in democracy; and provide continued legal education for legal professionals, lawyers, and judges in the region. It hopes to inspire the next generation of public servants; create avenues for meaningful public service careers in state and local governments, nonprofit organizations, and legal services; and serve as a hub of innovation and collaboration between communities to strengthen democracy.

About the Griffiths Center for Collaboration and Innovation (GCCI):

The Griffiths Center for Collaboration seeks to empower the next generation of social impact leaders by promoting cross-disciplinary innovation and entrepreneurship through high-impact community partnerships, innovation spaces and research opportunities. The center also facilitates dynamic career opportunities and connections with global partners that help define the student journey at Hartwick College

About Hartwick College:

Located in upstate New York, Hartwick College delivers a future-focused education through its distinctive FlightPath approach, which offers a distinctive blend of curricular, co-curricular, real-world and global experiences. With over 45 courses of study, four pre-professional programs, six cooperative programs, and certifications, Hartwick's personalized and flexible experience gives students everything they need to soar. For more information, visit

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