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New York Civic Health Index 2011

Striding Forward

December 5, 2011
NATIONAL CONFERENCE ON CITIZENSHIP
At the National Conference on Citizenship (NCoC), we believe everyone has the power to make a difference in how their communities and country thrive.

We are a dynamic, non-partisan nonprofit working at the forefront of our nation’s civic life. We continuously explore what shapes today’s citizenry, define the evolving role of the individual in our democracy, and uncover ways to motivate greater participation. Through our events, research and reports, NCoC expands our nation’s contemporary understanding of what it means to be a citizen. We seek new ideas and approaches for creating greater civic health and vitality throughout the United States.


THE NEW YORK STATE COMMISSION ON NATIONAL AND COMMUNITY SERVICE - NEW YORKERS VOLUNTEER
The New York State Commission on National and Community Service was established by Governor Mario Cuomo thorough Executive Order in 1994 and is supported administratively by the State Office of National and Community Service. With direction from the Office of the Governor, the Commission functions to build and reinforce a culture of service, citizenship and responsibility, and to institute accountability and efficiency in administration of national service and community volunteer programs operating in the state. The New York State Commission works collaboratively with the Corporation for National & Community Service and New York State Education Department to administer 240 national service programs that engage more than 80,000 volunteers annually in the State of New York. The resources provided by the State Commission and its partners address the needs identified in the state’s service and civic engagement agenda in the core areas of education, environmental stewardship, healthy futures, disaster services, veterans and military families, and economic opportunity. In addition, the State Commission leads the efforts of a statewide network of ten regional volunteer centers that partner with community-based organizations to deliver training and resources that build volunteer management capacity in order to more effectively meet state and local needs.


THE SIENA COLLEGE RESEARCH INSTITUTE
The Siena College Research Institute (SRI) is a full-service public opinion research institute located on the Siena College campus in Loudonville, New York. Established in 1980, SRI is committed to providing quality information to the public regarding political, economic, social, business, and voter issues. SRI conducts expert and public opinion polls on regional, state, and national levels utilizing an on-site call center, web and mail surveys, and analysis of existing data. SRI has a particular commitment to research dedicated to New York State and the many facets of its civic health. In addition to the monthly Siena New York poll that investigates the opinions of registered voters on political issues, SRI also produces the New York State Consumer Confidence Index and consumer confidence reports for various regional areas in the state.

A key component of SRI’s work is to produce public service research with the intent of informing community leaders, policymakers, and community members on the issues and needs of New York communities. SRI has researched life satisfaction, social capital of New York residents, and public perception of community social needs of New Yorkers, and specifically in the Capital District Region, and has done research on behalf of regional social service nonprofit entities. SRI has surveyed issues of health, leisure, homeownership, and the concrete effects of the recent economic downturn on the lives of New Yorkers. Thus, with expertise and experience, SRI examines the fabric of life in New York.


THE OFFICE OF ACADEMIC COMMUNITY ENGAGEMENT
The Office of Academic Community Engagement (ACE) at Siena College is dedicated to creating sustainable partnerships between higher education institutions and the greater community that seek to contribute to civic health. Through ACE programs (AmeriCorps*VISTA Fellows, Bonner Service Leaders, Academic Service Learning and Community Based Research) we strive to engage students, faculty, and staff to impact the root causes of social problems. ACE mobilizes more than $2 million of resources for community development and civic health initiatives in the Capital District annually. Through ACE’s national partnerships with the Corporation for National and Community Service, the Bonner Foundation, the Association of American Colleges and Universities, and Campus Compact, ACE is an active consultant, convener, contributor, and creator of best practices for university-community partnerships.


SIENA COLLEGE
Siena College is a learning community advancing the ideals of a liberal arts education, rooted in its identity as a Franciscan and Catholic institution.

Authors:
Dr. Mathew Johnson, Director of ACE, Associate Professor, Sociology and Environmental Studies
Dr. Don Levy, Director of Siena College Research Institute
Courtney Cozzy, Siena College AmeriCorps*VISTA Fellow
Mike Cauvel, Siena College Research Institute Intern
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