The higher education system in the United States is currently in flux. The cost of attending college is experiencing unprecedented increases, while federal and state support and resources are shrinking. In addition, public demands are shifting the culture of critical analysis common in liberal arts institutions to a focus on workforce development and job readiness. We have entered a new era and environment in which college administrators are confronted with an array of challenges that have the potential to threaten traditional, holistic education as well as civic and democratic engagement curriculum. This paper identifies the origins of social change theories impacting current paradigm shifts, explores modern theories related to change and higher education, and constructs a model of resilience using the Civic Learning and Democratic Engagement’s Theory of Emergent Change as a catalyst. The author also provides a practical example of how these combined models can be used to drive pedagogical approaches to civic literacy, democratic action, and community engagement in a new era.

Figures_Change is the essential process of all existence.docx (364 kB)
Figures_Change is the essential process of all existence.docx