FAQs

What is BreakingGround?
BreakingGround is a UMBC initiative that seeks to demonstrate and amplify the power of our students, faculty and staff as agents of meaningful change and renewal, on and off campus. BreakingGround is deeply embedded in a campus culture that builds community from diversity and celebrates ingenuity and resourcefulness. Learn more here.

What is “civic agency”?
“Civic agency” is the capacity to work collaboratively to make meaningful contributions to the common good. Civic agency involves both authenticity in relating to other people and imagination to envision alternative futures. People with civic agency have profound and justified confidence that they can make a difference in their communities. Civic agency is one of BreakingGround’s core values. To learn more, read “Against the current: Developing the civic agency of students” and  “The civic agency initiative.”

Who can be involved in BreakingGround?
Everyone who is a part of UMBC or connected to the UMBC community is welcome to get involved. Civic engagement is already an integral part of life at UMBC; BreakingGround was created to highlight the great work that is already underway and to promote connections within our community to further empower our students, faculty and staff as change-agents.

How can I get involved?
Check out our blog, course listing and service opportunities for specific ways you can get involved or connect with others. To submit an article for the BreakingGround blog, email David Hoffman. To share your event posting, email Achsah Joseph. For information on BreakingGround grants, email Steve Bradley (course development) or Sara Leidner (service programs).

Who writes for the BreakingGround blog?
Anyone in the UMBC community can submit content for the BreakingGround blog. Authors work in collaboration with the blog coordinators to publish material that is highly relevant to BreakingGround readers, focusing on the initiative’s central themes. Views and experiences shared on the blog represent individual contributors, and are not official statements or positions of the university. If you have an idea, experience or event to share on the blog, please email David Hoffman.

What resources does BreakingGround offer?
The UMBC Provost’s Office has provided funding to spark innovations in curriculum and in co-curricular programs relating to BreakingGround themes. In Spring 2012, faculty were awarded BreakingGround grants to develop new courses and modify existing courses that empower students as civic agents. See our website to learn more about these innovative courses or to apply for your own course redevelopment grant.

UMBC departments and student organizations interested in developing service projects reflecting BreakingGround themes can apply for implementation grants of up to $1,000. The purpose of these grants is to help transform what would otherwise be one-time community service projects into forums for the development of civic agency.

Where can I find information about voting in state and national elections?
Visit umbc.edu/voterregistration.

How can I learn more about BreakingGround?
For general information about BreakingGround or specific questions not addressed on this website, contact David Hoffman, dhoffman@umbc.edu.

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