Who is the “We” of BT2P?
BT2P is a national project, headquartered at Elon University. We are a community of educators – practitioners, researchers, faculty, staff, and administrators – committed to holistic, equitable change. We have built strong bonds with allies and partners from every region, sector, and issue area of the academy. Indeed our work prioritizes collaboration across silos, campus-wide change, and institutional collaboration. Although we are modest in scale, we aim to be bridge-builders and weavers in the work of educational change.
- We believe that undergraduate education should be holistic and transformative — fostering engaged learning, personal and community well-being, meaningful preparation for work, and democratic citizenship.
- We believe that educating the whole student means including and supporting all students — whoever they are, whatever they study.
- We believe that these commitments require fundamental change — change that will reshape the student experience, academic institutions, and the relationship of higher education to the larger society.
How Our Work Has Evolved
In our first fifteen years, BT2P pursued this commitment to change by offering grants to catalyze campus innovation in such areas as civic engagement, student wellbeing, engaged learning, the first-year experience, the de-siloing of academic and co-curricular programs, and the inclusion of historically marginalized students. Over time we have provided grant support for more than 700 projects on almost 600 campuses. The grants were usually modest, but the work they supported often created enduring impact on their campuses, and, along with our publications and convenings, they inspired change on other campuses. In effect, BT2P’s initial strategy helped to brought together a loose national laboratory in undergraduate innovation.
More recently we have built on that success by prioritizing collaboration among academic institutions, across academic sectors, and with communities. We came to believe that change doesn’t happen campus-by-campus. It needs to be reinforced by building communities of practice and networks of innovators and change leaders and by amplifying their voices across higher education.
What we’ve learned in this evolving work has led to the Paradigm Project, our most ambitious undertaking. The project seeks to catalyze new models of holistic learning and institutional transformation, to build a national movement of educational changemakers needed to realize it, and to promote public narrative change about higher education and its compact with the larger society. If our earlier work represented an evolution from campus-centered innovation to multi-institutional networks, the Paradigm Project seeks to take this evolution to the next level: to advance integration and systemic change in both the student experience and the institutions providing it.