Community Engagement Impact

Being The Difference with our partners

In 2019 Marquette University faculty and staff received $12 million through corporate, foundation, state and federal grants to conduct community-engaged research and provide services to address community-based issues in Milwaukee and beyond.

Marquette also invests more than $17 million worth of care and services annually in the city through its centers, clinics (dental, legal and health), institutes and programs. Additionally, the Marquette University Police Department conducts more than 90% of its work in the public right of way at a cost of more than $5 million annually.

Beyond faculty and staff, Marquette undergraduate and graduate students embrace the mission of the university and actively seek ways to engage the broader community through service and community-based learning. Highlights of this engagement include:

  • In 2020, during the COVID-19 pandemic, in partnership with American Family Insurance and the Johnson Controls Foundation, Marquette launched the President's Challenge COVID-19 Response grant. The challenge awarded three recipients up to $50,000 in funding for innovative, interdisciplinary, collaborative work that addresses needs in Milwaukee's community that have been created or magnified by the COVID-19 pandemic and represent critical areas in the community's recovery efforts.
  • 80% of our graduating seniors state that they participated in community service during their time at Marquette University.
  • In 2019-2020, the Community Day of Service celebrated 30 years at Marquette. The event placed more than 1,300 volunteers at 58 sites throughout the community for a one-day service project and donated $5,000 to Walker's Point Youth and Family Center.
  • In 2018, in partnership with the Johnson Controls Foundation, Marquette launched the President's Challenge. The challenge awarded a $250,000, two-year grant for one interdisciplinary, collaborative proposal that addresses inequities within a community. In 2019, The Next Step Clinic received an additional $100,000 beyond what was provided by the grant.

People on Impact page

Carnegie Seal
Marquette University has the Carnegie Classification for Community Engagement.


Near West Side Partners impact

Hundreds of students and more than a dozen faculty members from across campus have contributed to the Near West Side Partners, a collaborative model of community development sponsored by five institutional anchors including Marquette. Highlights include:

  • Economics students compiling and evaluating commercial and residential real estate data.
  • Political science students gaining applied learning experiences by conducting surveys of residents, employees and peers.
  • Business faculty and students organizing a neighborhood charrette and contributing to a local “shark tank” business plan competition to attract new businesses.
  • Members of Marquette University Student Government engaging in neighborhood cleanups and attending local landlord compacts to learn more about the concerns and efforts of local property owners/managers.
  • Collectively reducing crime through place-based interventions and collaborations.
  • Supporting the expansion of a monthly community meeting connecting residents of the seven neighborhoods that make up the Near West Side.
  • Installing neighborhood ambassadors, equipped to respond to safety concerns and provide resources to community members.