Aspirational Statement Three: Baylor will be a place... where our Christian faith inspires a desire to address systemic problems facing our community, both local and global.
Baylor's calling dictates that we engage in teaching, research, and innovation with full awareness of the needs of others. These fellow travelers might be residents of nearby neighborhoods with deep economic needs or members of a marginalized class in another hemisphere. As we encounter such situations, we must apply the resources within our educational community to ease burdens and resolve fundamental inequities. In the last decade, we have increased our engagement in the local community through various activities, including our Family Practice Center Partnership, the School of Social Work Hunger Initiative, Campus Kitchen, the Baylor Interdisciplinary Poverty Initiative, Steppin' Out, and engagement in local schools through placement of student teacher interns and as volunteers in school-sponsored programs. Through our libraries and digitization center, national collaborations such as the Black Gospel Music Restoration Project have provided access and preservation for rare materials that enhance our understanding of culture and history. And globally we have met needs through an increased number of mission trips, especially those that are discipline-specific, allowing students to use their intellectual and spiritual gifts to serve others while at the same time broadening students' understanding of the rich cultural diversity found throughout the world. In the coming decade, our efforts need to be more coordinated and focused. Therefore, we should:
- Pursue academic partnerships with local, national, and global constituents that are focused on human flourishing;
- Form stronger, more strategic community partnerships that improve the quality of life for all Central Texans;
- Support local research that provides a foundation for effective solutions to community concerns;
- Integrate service into the fabric of campus life; and
- Create educational opportunities that benefit the community and Baylor alumni.