On behalf of the Provost’s Office team, we want to inform you of important campus conversations in October that will help shape the Grand Challenges research priorities for the University of Minnesota and expand future student research and learning opportunities.  We hope that you will attend one or more of these conversations to contribute ideas and priorities from your perspective.  You can RSVP here.

We also want to make you aware of the opportunity to join with the Grand Challenges Research Forum Teams as a recorder of the breakout discussions during one or more forums.  Professional students who serve as recorders will receive a $50 gift certificate to the U of M Bookstores in recognition of this key contribution to the Grand Challenges Research process.

Five forums are structured around broad themes identified by the Provost’s Grand Challenges Research Strategies Team.  The goal of the forums is to help integrate, expand, enrich, and connect ideas that have been contributed by the faculty members through a “Call for Ideas” process during the summer.  Now, with the participation of students, faculty, and staff members across the Twin Cities campus, forum discussions will help shape recommendations to the Provost for the final determination of the Grand Challenges, based on the institution’s exceptional research strengths.  See details at http://strategic-planning.umn.edu/node/11.

The themes, dates, times, and locations of the forums are listed below. Discussion recorders will be asked to arrive 15 minutes in advance of the forum to confirm last-minute logistics for specific table discussions and to respond to any questions.  Recorders will receive a forum discussion template soon that should help organize notes for consistency across forums and to highlight key ideas and noteworthy discussion.

Please consider making a contribution as a recorder at one or more of the following forums (we are especially in need of recorders on Oct. 13, 14, 16, and 22):

How will we ensure just and equitable societies?

Monday, Oct. 12, 10:30 a.m.–12 noon, Rec & Wellness Center, Room MP5, 2nd Floor

How will we foster human potential and well-being across the life course in a diverse and changing world?

Tuesday, Oct. 13, 10– 11:30 a.m., Rec & Wellness Center, Room MP5, 2nd Floor

How will we advance human health?

Wednesday, Oct. 14, 8:30–10 a.m., Coffman Memorial Union—Campus Club, West Wing

How will we develop sustainable cities and resilient communities in a world of climate change?

Friday, Oct. 16, 8:30–10 a.m., Coffman Memorial Union—Campus Club, West Wing

How will we provide secure food, water, and energy today and for the future?

Thursday, Oct. 22, 9:30–11 a.m., Coffman Memorial Union Mississippi Room

Thank you for confirming your ability to contribute as a discussion recorder at one or more forums as soon as possible.  Please respond directly to Carla Carlson, Provost’s Office, who will be your key contact for next steps and related details – carlsonc@umn.edu.