Our passionate, dedicated students reach beyond our campus to take part in the life of our city and use their talents to support our neighboring communities.
Each year, thousands of our students work and volunteer in local schools and community organizations in Chicago. On campus and off, our students are empowered to challenge conventional thinking as they confront some of the most pressing challenges of our time.
Working alongside neighborhood partners, our students engage with the broader community, build lasting relationships, and expand their horizons as they bring their energy, enthusiasm, and fresh ideas to classrooms, community centers, and civic institutions across the city.
By becoming active participants in civic life, students make a valuable and lasting contribution to Chicago during their college years. Through these activities, they also hone their skills, broaden their worldviews, and develop a commitment to civic engagement that will shape and enrich the rest of their lives.
Find paid and volunteer opportunities with Office of Civic Engagement programs: Civic Knowledge Project, Collegiate Scholars Program, Community Programs Accelerator, Neighborhood Schools Program, Office of Special Programs-College Prep, and University Community Service Center.
Through education, resources and programs, the Polsky Center for Entrepreneurship and Innovation commercializes discoveries, partners with companies, and attracts venture capital. The Polsky Center runs a top-ranked business accelerator, the Edward L. Kaplan, ’71, New Venture Challenge; operates a 34,000 square-foot, multi-disciplinary co-working space and state-of-the-art Fabrication Lab for prototyping new products called the Polsky Exchange; and manages the George Shultz Innovation Fund, which invests in early-stage ventures.
Institute of Politics
The Institute of Politics, a non-partisan, extracurricular organization at the University of Chicago, aims to inspire and cultivate the next generation of political and public service leaders. The Civic Engagement Program provides pathways for undergraduate and graduate students from any academic division to activate their interest in politics through civic engagement.
Neighborhood Schools Program
The Neighborhood Schools Program is a community outreach program creating pathways of engagement between the University and local schools.
Community Programs Accelerator
Through partnerships with industry practitioners and connections to University resources, the Community Programs Accelerator provides technical assistance to help develop and strengthen community-based organizations on the South Side.
Seeds of Justice
Seeds of Justice is a community-building and leadership development program designed to provide a group of 20 selected first years with a long-term opportunities to engage on the South Side and learn about multiple social issues.
Student Civic Engagement Center
Home to the University’s two largest student civic engagement programs – the Neighborhood Schools Program (NSP) and University Community Service Center (UCSC) -- the Student Civic Engagement Center is a central hub for student civic engagement activities on campus.
6030 S. Ellis Ave.
Chicago, IL 60637