University Record Article by Laurel Thomas Gnagey

Hiram E Fitzgerald, PhD
Associate Provost for University Outreach and Engagement
University Distinguished Professor, Psychology
Michigan State University

Date: January 31, 2017 (Event)

Location: Henderson Room, Michigan League

Sponsors: Center for Educational OutreachCenter for Engaged Academic LearningGinsberg CenterCenter for Research on Learning and Teaching

Audio Recording: Download (MP3)
Presentation Slides: Download (PDF)


Community engagement scholarship (CES) embraces all forms of scholarship included within a continuum ranging from continuum of community based research to community based participatory research. Reflecting the core values of scholarly research, teaching, and service, CES is not a separate entity, but rather is a form of conduct related to the core triad of faculty roles and responsibilities. Because CES is community-based and focuses on solution-focused efforts to solve societal problems, it demands rigorous scholarly approaches to change. Simultaneously it recognizes the importance of indigenous and tacit knowledge for understanding change in the causal dynamics of complex systems.  It stresses reciprocity of community-university knowledge exchange in partnerships, transdisciplinary approaches to research, and sustainability of community change.  CES is an implicit aspect of the National Science Foundation’s Broader Impacts and NIH’s community engagement components of translational science. It is higher education’s contribution to the four helixes of system’s change (education, business, government, civil society). In this inaugural Faculty Forum, Hiram E Fitzgerald will provide an overview of the emergence of CES from the developmental science movement and provide examples of how CES illustrates higher education’s important contributions to the society that supports it.

Hiram E Fitzgerald is University Distinguished Professor in the Department of Psychology and Associate Provost for University Outreach and Engagement at Michigan State University. He is Adjunct Professor of Psychiatry at the University of Michigan and Adjunct Professor of Psychology at Edith Cowan University, Western Australia.   He served six years as president of the Engagement Scholarship Consortium. He also is past president and executive director of both the Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health and the International Association for Infant Mental Health, and for 16 years (1992-2008) served as executive director of the World Association for Infant Mental Health.

Fitzgerald has been associated with the Michigan Longitudinal Study of Family Risk for Alcoholism over the Life Course for 29 years, the Early Head Start National Research Consortium, the Research Center for AI/AN Early Childhood Education, chairs the MSU Wiba Anung EHS/HS research team monitoring work force development and early childhood education in partnership with the Intertribal Council of Michigan, is a member of the Native Children’s Research Exchange, and the National Tribal Head Start Research Center, and  is a member of a variety of interdisciplinary research teams focusing on evaluation of community-based early preventive-intervention programs in Michigan. He also serves on the National Advisory Boards of the University of Nebraska Buffet Early Childhood Research Center and the Oklahoma State University Center for Integrative Research on Childhood Adversity, and is an appointed member of the Executive Committee of Michigan’s Early Childhood Investment Corporation.

Fitzgerald’s major areas of research include the study of infant and family development in community contexts, the impact of fathers on early child development, implementation of systemic community models of organizational process and change, the etiology of alcoholism, and broad issues related to the scholarship of engagement.  He has published over 500 articles, chapters, books, technical reports, and peer-reviewed abstracts.  He served terms as editor or associate editor of journals such as Child Development, Infant Mental Health Journal, Perspectives in Infant Mental Health, Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Oher Drugs, and the Journal of Higher Education Outreach and Engagement.

Fitzgerald received the BA degree in psychology from Lebanon Valley College (1962), the MA degree in experimental psychology (1964) and the Ph.D. degree in developmental psychology (1967) from the University of Denver.  He has received numerous awards, including the ZERO TO THREE Dolley Madison Award for Outstanding Lifetime Contributions to the Development and Well Being of Very Young Children, the Michigan Association for Infant Mental Health Selma Fraiberg Award, and the designation of Honorary President from the World Association for Infant Mental Health.  He is a Fellow of the American Psychological Association (Divisions 7, 34, 37. 43. 50) and the Association of Psychological Science.  He is an elected member of the Academy of Community Engagement Scholarship (2014), and the International Adult and Continuing Education Hall of Fame (2015).