Five College Public Policy Initiative

The Five College Public Policy Initiative is designed to enhance collaboration among Five College faculty and students interested in curricula, research and outreach related to public policy.

Currently, more than 300 classes at Amherst, Hampshire, Mount Holyoke and Smith colleges, and the University of Massachusetts Amherst include public policy as an important focus in one or more units of the course. In addition, many campus-based projects, centers and internships engage our learning communities with the policy world.

The Five College Public Policy Initiative supports our institutions' collective commitment to employing, informing and disseminating important public policy perspectives, and to raising the visibility of that commitment within and beyond the Five College area.

Three projects currently comprise the Five College Public Policy Initiative:

The Social Justice Practitioner-in-Residence Program gives Five College students and faculty unique opportunities to engage with and learn from individuals who have hands-on policymaking experience. By offering occasions to interact with those who have chosen lives of service, the residency program will help students imagine careers of their own that might advance the common good. Read more about the selected residents.

The Curriculum Bridging Project offers Five College faculty opportunities to explore curricular and pedagogical innovations that bridge undergraduate and professional education in the areas of public policy, organizational leadership and innovation for social change. Through faculty development workshops, visiting speakers and hands-on projects with graduate and undergraduate students across the Five Colleges, the Curriculum Bridging Project is helping to shape the next generation of social change leaders.

The Master of Public Policy (MPP) program offers current Five College undergraduates the opportunity to earn a professional graduate degree from UMass Amherst just one year after completing their bachelor's. The MPP curriculum integrates theoretical learning with multiple opportunities for practical applications

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