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Government-to-university network expands in the US

The Volcker Alliance’s initiative aims to connect governments’ hiring and research needs with local university capacity and is expanding into Chicago and North Carolina.

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Chicago is one of the cities to benefit from the Volcker Alliance’s initiative
Chicago is one of the cities to benefit from the Volcker Alliance’s initiative

A network that aims to connect governments’ hiring and research needs with local university capacity is expanding into Chicago and North Carolina.


It follows a successful launch of the Volcker Alliance’s first three government-to-university (G2U) networks in Kansas City, Los Angeles, and Pittsburgh.


Growing, vibrant network


The G2U Initiative is a growing group of vibrant, regional networks connecting local, state, and federal government leaders with key faculty and administrators from surrounding colleges and universities.


“The expansion of G2U to Chicago and North Carolina will provide for collaboration and learning across the G2U network at a time when universities, governments, and the job market are undergoing massive transformations due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” said Thomas Ross, president of the non-profit, non-partisan Volcker Alliance, which seeks to advance effective management of government to achieve results that matter to citizens.


He adds: “The enthusiasm from partners in government, universities, and the civic sector in regions across the country illustrates the promise and power of G2U collaborations in reshaping the future of government.”
In Chicago, the G2U Regional Council will be led by the Government College Relations Council (GCRC), a professional association that supports working relationships between representatives from colleges and universities and from federal, state, county, and local governments.


“At GCRC, our mission is to ensure that students in the Chicago area who are thinking about public service know about all the potential opportunities that a career in government holds. Joining the G2U network will strengthen what we have been working towards at GCRC for the last 50 years,” said Jaime Velasquez, president of GCRC and associate director of employer relations in career services at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

“The enthusiasm from partners in government, universities, and the civic sector illustrates the promise and power of G2U collaborations in reshaping the future of government”

In North Carolina, the Volcker Alliance is partnering with the Office of Strategic Partnerships (OSP) within the Governor’s Office/Office of State Budget and Management. OSP increases and enhances partnerships between state government and North Carolina’s research institutions and philanthropic sector. This includes increasing state government’s internal capacity for using evidence in policy and programmes.


OSP helps to develop and lead partnerships on priority issues such as broadband access and re-entry of formerly incarcerated people. Particularly relevant to G2U is its initiative to strengthen the talent pipeline linking college and university graduates with career opportunities in state government.


“We are excited to join the G2U network and have already seen how our focus on strengthening the talent pipeline to state government aligns with the work of other G2U sites. We look forward to sharing our partnership strategies that are yielding benefits for North Carolina and learning from the approaches of other network members,” said Jenni Owen, director of strategic partnerships for the State of North Carolina.


The first G2U regional network, led by the Mid-America Regional Council in Kansas City, was launched in March 2019. The second two, led by the Southern California Association of Governments in Los Angeles and by Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy and the Metro21:Smart Cities Institute in Pittsburgh, launched in February 2020.


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