The Newhouse Foundation donates $ 1.5 million to endow CIRCLE’s management


The Samuel I. Newhouse Foundation offered the Center for Information and Research on Civic Learning and Engagement (CIRCLE) at Tufts with a $ 1.5 million endowment to finance the post of its director.

CIRCLE’s Newhouse Director, Kei Kawashima-Ginsberg, expressed his gratitude to New houses for their generosity in filling her position, which she has held since April 2015.

“I am truly grateful that the Newhouses see that there is value in placing a truly unique institution like CIRCLE… and have decided to support a foundation for [its] director. It’s really important that it’s not given to me, per se, as an academic, but it’s given to the job, and it’s a really huge message to me … about how leaders view an institution. like this as a solid place within Tufts University, ” Kawashima-Ginsberg said.

CIRCLE, an independent, non-partisan research organization based at Tisch College of Civic Life at Tufts University, conducts research on youth civic engagement in the United States.

Dean of Tisch College Dayna Cunningham explained why CIRCLE is vital at Tufts and across the country.

“CIRCLE… has an incredible database [for] monitoring of the political commitment of young people. There is a very important job of what I call field building, which consists of charting a possible future direction for the field of civic studies ”, Cunningham said.

One of CIRCLE’s many ongoing initiatives is the Educating for American Democracy Project, which aims to reinvent civic and historical education. CIRCLE also works with educators in several states, including Illinois and Massachusetts, to reach young people.

CIRCLE Project Manager Sarah Keese expressed his enthusiasm for CIRCLE research work in progress.

“[Our research] embraces so much of our values ​​of things like youth as assets, and overcoming that stigma of youth apathy, and I’m really excited about all the things to come with growing voters, ” Keese said.

Before becoming director in 2015, Kawashima-Ginsberg worked at CIRCLE as principal researcher and then as deputy director.

“I was drawn to the fact that Tisch had already established community partnerships and had many partners. And of course I like working with young people, so I was drawn to the fact that Tisch already had a lot of students working with them ”, Kawashima-Ginsberg noted.

Kawashima-Ginsberg now supervises all projects carried out at CIRCLE. She explained her plans on how to continue the success of CIRCLE In the years to come.

“More and more voters [is] don’t just talk to young people when the election is approaching or approaching, but you just sign up and then tell you to vote and go away. This is what we call a typical mobilization model ”, Kawashima-Ginsberg said. “We think we should increase the number of voters much earlier in people’s lives. This is an example of really trying to organize an area to think differently, instead of just researching and [saying] “It really doesn’t work. “

Alberto Medina, who heads the CIRCLE communication team, highlighted another of CIRCLE’s ongoing research projects.

“We are really trying to innovate in … research on the relationship between young people, media and civic engagement”, said Medina. “So this goes for things like working with social media like Snapchat… obviously such a big part of everything, but mostly [affects] how young people receive messages about politics, about elections, about their role in society and civic life.

Elyse Newhouse (I 82), and her husband, Michael Newhouse (A’82), have been involved with Tufts University and Tisch College for several years. In addition to as a trustee, Elyse Newhouse has also served on the advisory boards of the School of Arts and Sciences, Tisch Library and now Tisch College.

The CIRCLE Director position is the second position at Tufts to be filled by the Newhouse Foundation. In 2018, new homes endowed the Newhouse Professor of Civics position in the hope of strengthening the link between Tisch College and the Department of Political Science.

Cunningham explained how Kawashima-Ginsberg new position complements the Newhouse Professor of Civics position.

“They provide and allow this institutional stability of this research and creation laboratory with tools to advance democracy. [as well as] scholarships to better understand what are the challenges of democracy from a theoretical point of view ”, Cunningham said.

Medina expressed his enthusiasm to see how CIRCLE’s research will continue to progress under Kawashima-Ginsberg given direction the Newhouse Foundation recent endowment of his mandate as director.

“This endowment is a recognition of our work as an organization and the importance of our work on our mission, but it is also truly a recognition of [Kawashima-Ginsberg’s] leadership, personally and professionally ”, Medina noted.

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