Improving lives in Southwest Central Indiana

The Center for Rural Engagement enlists IU Bloomington’s vast and varied resources, in collaboration with local communities and regional partners, to address challenges and opportunities in 11 neighboring counties of Southwest Central Indiana.

Our goal is to improve the lives of people living in these counties, and to demonstrate how a research university’s broad resources—when paired with the talents, skills, and passion of the local community—can improve the well-being of the region.

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Map of Indiana, with 11 counties highlighted

The 11 county partners of Southwest Central Indiana

  • Owen County
  • Greene County
  • Monroe County
  • Brown County
  • Lawrence County
  • Washington County
  • Orange County
  • Crawford County
  • Dubois County
  • Martin County
  • Daviess County

Featured initiative

Sustaining Hoosier Communities

Indiana University’s Sustaining Hoosier Communities initiative forges durable, robust partnerships with local communities to explore challenges and identify opportunities that will enhance their unique economic, natural, physical, human, and cultural assets.

Based on a national model, this initiative allows IU Bloomington faculty and their students to explore these projects as part of existing courses, in partnership with local project leaders.

A pilot of the Sustaining Hoosier Communities initiative is underway in Lawrence County, where local communities have identified over two dozen projects suitable for IU Bloomington faculty and their classes, across many disciplines, during the 2017–18 academic year. For more information about this program, please contact

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Bringing together people, perspectives, and expertise:

  • State and local officials
  • County leaders and stakeholders
  • Private and nonprofit sectors
  • IU faculty, staff, and students
  • Citizens of all ages, including youth
  • Religious leaders
  • Teachers and academicians at every level
  • Professionals in every field

Help us find solutions to the challenges and opportunities facing Southwest Central Indiana and its communities