Book Review | A Message from the Book Review Editor

Dr. Andrew J. Pearl

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I am honored to have been asked to serve as the new Book Review Editor for the Journal of Community Engagement and Scholarship. Not only do I view this as a great opportunity to serve in the advancement of higher education community-engaged scholarship, but also as an opportunity for me to learn from authors, scholars, and community partners from across the country and around the globe.

I am currently director of Academic Engagement at the University of North Georgia, where my overarching responsibility is to institutionalize community-engaged scholarship across our five campuses. Among the ways that we accomplish this is to engage with and develop faculty members, work with students and let them know about the educational opportunities available to them, and develop mutually beneficial community partnerships.

I am a relatively recent graduate of the University of Georgia’s Institute of Higher Education, and my scholarly agenda includes faculty member motivations related to the scholarship of engagement, student motivations and outcomes related to service-learning experiences, and institutional and public policies that affect community engagement in higher education. In my research, I utilize the complementary strengths of both quantitative and qualitative analytic methods to fully explore scholarly questions, often through interdisciplinary collaborations. I am also interested in exploring how graduate students are socialized for and participate in community engagement, as well as strategies for integrating engagement into the STEM fields.

My goal with the book reviews in JCES will be to introduce readers to literature that advances knowledge, provides practical advice, disseminates best practices, and encourages conversation and dialogue. Book reviewers will not only provide summaries of recently published titles relevant to our field, but will also critically analyze and examine the works through the lens of community engagement.

I invite faculty members, administrators, staff members, students, and community partners to offer their interpretations of the literature. From its beginning, JCES has always intentionally been a “different kind of journal,” which helps to establish a niche among scholarly publication outlets. In addition to providing established scholars and researchers with a platform to disseminate their work, we also seek to hear from all of the people who work to make these multi-faceted community-campus partnerships work. In the true spirit of community engagement, we encourage authorship from first-time authors, students at all levels, and community partners.

To paraphrase Ernest Boyer, higher education has the potential, and I might even say the responsibility, to advance both intellectual and civic life, and I believe that JCES plays an important role in this process. I gratefully look forward to the opportunity to work with the rest of the JCES editorial and publishing team as we continue to build on the wonderful foundation already in place.

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