This edited conversation among members of Imagining America’s 2011-2012 Publicly Engaged Graduate Education (PAGE) cohort is our attempt to both critique and enact the shift David Scobey anticipates in his talk, “Civic Engagement and the Copernican Moment” (which has been published as IA’s 11th Foreseeable Future, available for download here). We have used various media to create this response collaboratively: Mozilla’s open source Etherpad platform, email exchanges, and transcribed conference calls.
Professor Scobey reflects back on the development of Imagining America (IA) to examine the contemporary moment in the academy and its future, but what can PAGE’s development in this context say about “change, crisis, and innovation in higher education”? Since 2003, PAGE, first under the direction of Sylvia Gale and then Kevin Bott, has helped IA consider the full career arc of the publically engaged scholar (1) and contribute to trans-disciplinary professionalization and mentorship for graduate students. PAGE shares Scobey’s interest in what it might mean if the institution were not the center of our reality in higher education. We come together from various disciplines and campuses across the country for mutual support, reciprocity, camaraderie, and collaborative scholarship. While Scobey calls for a re-envisioning of place and pedagogy for undergraduates, new scholarship and artistry like Nick Sousanis’s, featured on this cover, also calls out for a re-envisioning of dissertations, doctoral programs, partnerships, and scholarly artifacts.