Embracing Change and Coalition Building

November 22, 2023

As many of you know, Iowa & Minnesota Campus Compact is in the midst of some big and exciting changes. On July 1, 2024, Iowa & Minnesota Campus Compact’s affiliate status with Campus Compact will end. While our mission and work will remain the same, we will emerge from the disaffiliation process with a new name, new brand identity, and revitalized vision for our work together. 

In the summer of 2022, our team began the journey of exploring a new organizational identity following Campus Compact’s decision to dissolve its affiliate-based model. As we were given a two-year timeframe to alter our relationship with Campus Compact, we decided to spend that time engaging you–the members of our network– in helping reimagine the future of this organization. 

Through our Future Focused Listening Tour, our staff visited 53 of our member campuses to discuss with our network how we have shown up in the past and how we could work together in the future. We met with 283 individual members of our network and received 116 responses to an online survey. The Future-Focused Listening Tour was an opportunity for us to build and refresh relationships, call attention to the major influences on your engagement work, and identify how a path forward built on past work and new avenues. We are grateful for your voices in building the path forward for this organization, and we look forward to continuing to listen, reflect, and grow together.

Throughout the summer and fall, we worked with marketing firm 818 to develop a new brand identity– including convening two focus groups of staff and faculty to discuss names and brand identities. In the process of crafting a name and brand identity that represents our network, mission, and core values, our team came to a realization about who we are as an organization. We realized that this amalgamation of people and campus communities is more than simply a network– it is a coalition. We are a coalition.

What Makes a Coalition?

A coalition is defined as a group of people moving together toward action. This idea honors our connections and moves us forward in the pursuit of a common goal. As a coalition, we are compelled to unify ourselves in service to a shared vision rather than doing the work in isolation. Without shared vision and collective action, we lose power and purpose in our attempts to enact meaningful change. To put it simply– we can’t do this alone, and we need each other.

When we think about what this means in the context of this organization, our coalition of Midwest colleges and universities shares the common goal of fulfilling the public purpose of higher education– preparing students and supporting communities in the pursuit of an engaged democracy for us all. This is not only what we do, but it is who we are. Our work in this field has always been in service to creating a world where everyone’s voice is heard; where people convene to engage in collective problem solving; where communities are built on a foundation of meaningful relationships, shared humanity, and a commitment to caring for one another. Our efforts in encouraging an engaged democracy through higher education are supported by the values of collaboration, connection, and coalition-building. We cherish the relationships forged by our work together, which continue to strengthen our coalition and deepen our collective dedication to the common good.

Announcing Our Countdown to Coalition Series

As we close the chapter on our time as a Campus Compact affiliate, we are leaning into change and taking this opportunity to recommit ourselves to the mission and values which guide our coalition. Therefore, Iowa & Minnesota Campus Compact is excited to announce our Countdown to Coalition Series: a multi-part blog series dedicated to examining the “why” of our work as a coalition-building organization for colleges and universities in the Midwest. This series will pave the way for the official unveiling of our new organizational identity in Spring 2024. We invite all of you to gear up for this new adventure together by celebrating change and reflecting on our values, the work we’ve done together for over two decades, and the work that is yet to come.