Campus Compact seeks Evaluator for Engaged Scholars Initiative

November 1, 2019

Campus Compact is pleased to invite evaluation consultants to submit proposals for the Engaged Scholars Initiative (ESI) being carried out over the next year. Up to $20,000 in funding is available to conduct an evaluation of the Engaged Scholars Initiative.

Project Title: Engaged Scholars Initiative Program Evaluation Project Start Date: January 2020
Project End Date: January 2021

Proposals are due at 5pm PST on Monday, December 2, 2019. Submit proposals here.


Background on the Organization

Campus Compact is a national coalition of 1000 colleges and universities committed to the public purposes of higher education. As the only national higher education association dedicated solely to campus-based democracy-building, Campus Compact enables higher education institutions to develop students’ citizenship skills and forge effective community partnerships. Our resources support senior administrators, faculty, staff, and students as they pursue community-based teaching, scholarship, and action in the service of positive change. Established in 1985, our network is comprised of a national office in Boston and state/multi-state offices and affiliates across the country. Additionally, the national network is divided into four regions of the country – East, South, Midwest, and West – and Compacts collaborate to offer key member engagement activities.

Background on the Project

In 2008, Campus Compact convened an intentionally diverse group of ten engaged faculty and staff who named themselves the Engaged Scholars for New Perspectives in Higher Education. Over the last decade, they have published and presented collaboratively and taken on new leadership roles in their institutions and the field. Many consider the group’s initial retreat a formative experience: in their words, it “was a catalyst for developing my scholarly identity,” “one of the most joyful experiences of my career,” and a central element of “my story of leadership development and what keeps me grounded in the work I do.”

In order to offer this kind of opportunity for more emerging diverse leaders across the United States, the Campus Compact network is currently piloting regional ESI cohorts in the Eastern, Midwest, and Western Regions. The primary goals of ESI are to:

Engaged Scholars Initiative Evaluation Request for Proposals 1

  1. develop engaged scholars who are committed to addressing power dynamics and advancing equity and full participation in institutions and communities;
  2. advance scholarly objectives, including research, teaching and/or application, of each scholar’s choosing;
  3. strengthen professional networks by building deep relationships among scholars;
  4. expand the perspectives and types and sources of knowledge incorporated and highlighted across the field; and
  5. generate individual and collaborative work that translates the scholars’ insights into

traditional (e.g., academic publications, conference presentations, white papers, etc.),

creative works (e.g., public art, exhibitions, spoken word performances, etc.), and

educational and community resources (e.g., program evaluations, policy analysis,


materials, etc.).

a. b. c.

ESI cohorts currently include a balance of 12-15 early-career faculty and professional staff. Faculty are full-time and either on a tenure track or in a contract system. Faculty on the tenure track are eligible only if they are pre-tenure and faculty in contract systems are not beyond their eighth year. Professional staff and administrators are not beyond their eighth year of full-time professional experience in the field. Cohort composition is intentionally diverse using factors including level of experience, position type, institution type, geography, and demographic identities (e.g. race, ethnicity, gender, etc.).

Cohort members participate in a combination of in-person retreats and meetings, embedded institutes connected to regional or national conferences, and monthly online meetings that focus on a combination of relationship development, professional learning, network development, and scholarly productivity. Additionally, each cohort member is assigned a volunteer professional mentor who is a leader in the field. Currently, there are three active cohorts in the Compact network:

  • ●  Eastern Region – launched January 2019 and ends June 2020
  • ●  Midwest Region – launched May 2019 and ends June 2020
  • ●  Western Region – launches November 2019 and ends November 2020 There are two primary facilitators that lead all three cohorts – Marisol Morales, Campus Compact’s Vice President for Network Leadership and Julie Plaut, Assistant Dean of the College and Swearer Center Director of Faculty Engagement and Research at Brown University. Each regional cohort is supported by one or more Compact staff members who act as the primary organizers and administrators for cohort activities. Each region has identified and selected one or more strategic partners to support their cohort work. Strategic partners are higher education and/or community partner organizations who commit additional intellectual, human, facility, and/or financial capital to the success of the project.


    In line with our deep commitment to making meaningful change in higher education, Campus Compact seeks an individual or team to design and implement an evaluation of the Engaged Scholars Initiative. The selected evaluator(s) will develop and implement an evaluation framework for the ESI program that focuses on process, outcomes, and impact and directly supports programmatic continuous improvement efforts and decision making. While the primary target of this evaluation project will be the three- current regional ESI cohorts, this project is expected to include reflections of the original 2008 cohort that align with the designed framework. We require a strategic approach to evaluation that will be rigorous within the programmatic and financial resources available.

    Engaged Scholars Initiative Evaluation Request for Proposals 2

Project Objectives

The selected evaluator(s) will collaborate with Compact representatives on the overall design of the project including specific deliverables and timelines. The broad objectives of this project evaluation are:

  1. To develop a multi-year evaluation plan which can be implemented during the contract period as well as in the future by program administrators. It is expected that this plan aligns with key stakeholder priorities and resources and uses multiple types of metrics, instruments, and measurement techniques.
  2. To provide an objective assessment of the overall efficacy of ESI including to what degree stated program goals were achieved. We require an objective analysis information report for program administrators that can be used for programmatic decision making, continuous improvement, fundraising, and planning.
  3. To understand the long term impact it had on past participants.
  4. To develop a comprehensive set of recommendations and insights that will support Campus Compact’s development of a formal theory of change for the project.

While the current three cohorts share the same program goals, programmatic elements, and primary facilitators, the evaluation should recognize the differences in structure, regional approaches, and implementation timelines (noted above). The evaluator(s) will take into consideration that these cohorts have already begun their work together.

Project Deliverables

Deliverables should include both written reports, summaries, and presentation to key ESI program administrators. Specific deliverables must include:

  1. Cohort level reports for the three active cohorts – Cohort reports should include disaggregated data by cohort and specific feedback for regional decisions makers at/near the conclusion of their specific cohort. The target cohort report due dates are:
    1. Eastern Region – June 2020
    2. Midwest Region – June 2020
    3. Western Region – December 2020
  2. A retrospective report on the 2008 cohort – a report with data gathered from the individuals who participated in the first cohort from 10 years ago about the impact of their participation. Target due date is January 2021.
  3. An overall project-wide report – The overall project-level reporting should include a final summative report linking together the findings, themes, and key concepts across all four cohorts as well as insights that can shape a theory of change for the program moving forward. Target due date is January 2021.
  4. Evaluation Recommendations – Based on successes and challenges of this evaluation project, the evaluator(s) should present an evaluation plan that outlines recommendations for future evaluation activities consistent with the project scope and resources. Target due date is January 2021. Engaged Scholars Initiative Evaluation Request for Proposals 3

It is expected that a significant amount of the evaluatorswork will occur between January and June/July 2020. Please note that we expect evaluators to attend the final retreat of each of the cohorts. The final retreats are: Eastern Region – May 2020 in Providence, RI; Midwest Region in June 2020 – East Lansing, MI; and Western Region – Fall 2020 in Bozeman, MT.


The total project budget shall not exceed $20,000 for all expenses beginning January 2020 through January 2021.

Allowable costs include evaluator time (e.g. hourly rate or stipend), travel (e.g. transportation, food, and lodging), and required materials and supplies. Other costs will be

considered if deemed essential to the project. No overhead or indirect costs will be allowed on this project. Additionally, Campus Compact may provide access to various technology platforms which may be useful to the evaluator (e.g. SurveyMonkey, Google Forms, etc.).

Please note that many ESI scholars will attend the 2020 Campus Compact conference in Seattle, March 29-April 1, 2020. The Western Region ESI cohort will meet at the conference and cohort members from other regions will likely attend as well. While not mandatory that the evaluator attend the 2020 national Campus Compact conference, it may provide an efficient location for conducting focus groups or interviews with ESI participants.


Proposals must include the following:

1. A narrative, not to exceed three pages*, detailing the applicant’s experience with faculty development and/or leadership programs, experience with evaluation, experience with and understanding of the issues related to evaluation goals described above; including preliminary scope of evaluation work (e.g. how do you think the evaluation of the program should be done?), and evaluation/assessment design.

2. A timeline and staffing responsibilities, not to exceed one page, for evaluation work. If there will be more than one person working on this evaluation, describe division of labor.

3. A project budget including any staff time, travel funds, or other necessary materials. Please limit budget and budget narrative to two pages.

4. Appendices including the applicant’s résumé or curriculum vitae and optional additional supporting materials, e.g. examples of prior evaluation projects.

5. A diversity & equity statement that briefly (roughly 150-200 words) summarizes the significance of diversity, equity, and inclusion in your own personal or professional life.

Applicant bids are expected to come in between $10,000 and $20,000 and the selection

committee will give careful attention to a combination of a high-quality proposal, funds stewardship and

experience in making its decision.

*A page is double-spaced, Times New Roman, 12-pt font

Engaged Scholars Initiative Evaluation Request for Proposals 4


The research tools, data, and reports produced as part of this evaluation will remain the property of Campus Compact. The evaluator may elect to publish their research findings, provided they credit Campus Compact when doing so.


Proposals are due via Submittable by 5pm PST on Monday, December 2, 2019. Contact Nicole Springer at nspringer {at} compact(.)org with any questions about the proposal requirements or the scope of work.

This is a competitive bidding process. A committee will review all proposals using the criteria including, but not limited to the efficacy, feasibility, and adequacy of evaluation design, experience/expertise of evaluators, and cost effectiveness and stewardship of funds. Finalist interviews will occur the week of December 9th with a goal of making the final selection will take place the week of December 16th.


Campus Compact strives to attract and retain a diverse and talented staff and contractors who will contribute to the organization’s goals, mission, and vision. We encourage individuals of all ethnic, racial, genders and sexual orientations, religious, and socioeconomic backgrounds to apply. Campus Compact is committed to increasing diversity, consistent with the values of our network.

Campus Compact is committed to providing equal employment/contracting opportunities to qualified individuals and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, ethnicity, religion, sex, gender, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, national origin, disability, age, height, weight, marital status, veteran status, pregnancy, parental status, genetic information or characteristics (or those of a family member), or any other basis prohibited by law. Please note that Campus Compact is a proud Employer of National Service. We encourage alumni of AmeriCorps VISTA, AmeriCorps, Peace Corps, and other national service programs to submit proposals.

This information is available to download here.