The Washington University Community Counts inventory is an ongoing effort to capture the breadth of civic engagement and community service initiatives undertaken by our campus community.

Through over 600 community partnerships, we collectively contribute nearly 1 million volunteer hours annually to initiatives in the St. Louis region.

Add Your Initiative

Data collection for the 2017-2018 instrument will begin soon. Please check back for more details.

Please see the FAQ below for helpful tips and further info.

If you have any questions, please contact Jillian A. Martin, Assistant Director for Strategy and Evaluation.


Why is Community Counts Important?
Community Counts identifies the nature and scope of civic engagement, community service, community outreach, philanthropy and engaged teaching and research conducted by schools, departments, programs, and groups.

This information is critical for Washington University’s national benchmarking efforts, which increasingly require metrics regarding our community engagement. Internally, this information is used to gauge the scope and depth of our community partnerships, and inform opportunities for improvement and collaboration across the schools and departments.

What activities count in Community Counts?
Initiatives included in Community Counts meet ALL of the following criteria:

  1. Are undertaken by our Washington University community members
  2. Are organized, programmatic initiatives (having their own goals)
  3. Performed by a group of 2 or more people from Washington University (not just one individual)
  4. Partner in some way with an organization or community external to the university

What questions should I prepare to answer for Community Counts?
This inventory includes questions about:

  • Explanation of the initiative
  • Who was involved
  • How many people were involved
  • Amount of time spent on initiative
  • Basic information on community partners

What should I do if my initiative doesn’t seem to fit the requirements?
If you think something is “community engagement,” please contact Jillian A. Martin and describe the initiative.

How can Community Counts benefit me in the future?
Members of the Washington University community can request information from Community Counts. Some past examples include:

  • Types of initiatives in a specific academic school
  • Initiatives that take place in a specific geographic area
  • Information on community partnerships or specific organizations attached to initiatives
  • Information on student group-led initiatives
  • Initiatives by type of community engagement (for example, all philanthropy-specific initiatives)