ASU awarded Fund for Positive Engagement grant

October 31, 2017

The 2016 election left many communities looking for better ways to communicate with one another, an issue that Arizona State University is working to improve for students on and off campus. 

The university is now one of 40 institutions to receive funding from Campus Compact, a Boston-based nonprofit organization working to advance the public purposes of higher education. Neal A. Lester, the founding director of Project Humanities and professor of English Neal A. Lester, the founding director of Project Humanities and professor of English. Download Full Image

ASU’s Project Humanities in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences is a recipient of the Fund for Positive Engagement grant and is looking to bring the community together by launching a new public engagement series.

The series will focus on place and identity in the form of a dinner titled, "Aridity and the Desert." The series will begin fall 2017 continuing through spring 2018, with the first event on Nov. 14.

“Such a dinner and dialogue series builds upon the many strong connections the award-winning Project Humanities initiative has with various communities inside and beyond ASU,” said Neal A. Lester, the founding director of Project Humanities and professor of English. “Project Humanities will engage diverse individuals and communities in talking, listening and connecting to build bridges that promote civil dialogue and engagement and that demonstrate the power of our shared humanity.”

With the funding from Campus Compact, Project Humanities can address the immediate need to respond and participate in the effort to contribute in creating innovative interventions to build strong and diverse communities.

“We wanted to create an incentive for colleges and universities to come up with creative responses to the challenges they are seeing,” said Andrew Seligsohn, president of Campus Compact. “We have been hearing from our member colleges and universities that students and community members cannot hold conversations with people with differing political views. Immigrant and Muslim students are afraid to express their views.”

The first dinner will take place at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 14, at the Phoenix Public Market Café. The series will use music, performance and poetry to explore “aridity” and the basic human need for tolerance, social harmony and civility.

Rachel Bunning

Communications program coordinator, School of Historical, Philosophical and Religious Studies

ASU Knowledge Enterprise Development Operations certified to ISO 9001:2015

November 1, 2017

International Standards Organization (ISO) certification has become a common mark of excellence in business, especially in the services and manufacturing sectors, but it’s uncommon in higher education.

Like an Underwriter’s Laboratory (UL) listing for consumer electronics or a Good Housekeeping Seal for household products, ISO 9001 certification signals to a company’s clients and partners that its business practices reliably lead to high quality products and services. Download Full Image

Arizona State University’s Knowledge Enterprise Development (KED) operations division recently received ISO 9001:2015 certification, signifying that its quality management principles — including a strong customer focus, the role of top management, the organization’s process approach and continual improvement — are among the best.

For ASU, ISO certification bridges the gap between the different ways industry and higher education do business, and makes ASU a preferred partner for future projects, according to Sethuraman Panchanathan, executive vice president of Knowledge Enterprise Development and chief research and innovation officer at ASU.

“This accomplishment showcases innovative leadership from KED operations, and affirms ASU’s commitment to its researchers and partners to support and grow high-quality research and partnerships that have a global impact,” he said. “The certification provides a solid quality and service framework to enable our talented people to focus on preventing diseases, exploring the solar system, creating reliable energy sources, and all the other vital work that they do.”

At ASU, KED oversees research services, entrepreneurship and innovation, corporate and economic development, international development and tech transfer. ISO certification will be an important tool for building partnerships with industry and managing research funding from federal and state agencies, said Tamara Deuser, associate vice president of operations and chief of staff at ASU Knowledge Enterprise Development.

“This certification, and the best-in-class standard it represents, ensures that we provide our researchers, partners and staff members fast, efficient support in the administrative and regulatory aspects of their work,” Deuser said. “We will continue to improve the processes and services we provide to our researchers that help them foster groundbreaking ideas and actions.”

ASU worked with DEKRA Certification, Inc. throughout the certification process. DEKRA Certification, Inc. is a U.S.-based certification body for international management systems. The company works with companies to apply standards for greater productivity, reduced waste, larger profits an enhanced customer experience and growth of a continuous improvement culture.

“We want to congratulate ASU on this unique achievement,” said Chris Carson, senior director of strategic business development for DEKRA certification. “The standard was designed to be applicable to all organizations, and they have shown themselves to be a leader in quality for academia.”