The Center for Family Studies, established in 1979, was designed to stimulate and encourage the interdisciplinary study of the family. It serves both the University and the community by fostering collaboration between faculty, students, practitioners and community leaders on curriculum development, educational conferences and seminars, research and training, and public policy relevant to important family issues.
The Center is represented by faculty from five colleges and over fifteen disciplines. It also includes leaders from various community systems, such as the schools, hospitals, courts, churches, mental health, social and health care agencies.
The Center's primary goal is to facilitate the growth and development of family strengths and to enhance the quality of family life. Families and their natural societal environments are interactive and interdependent. Each influences and impacts upon the other; each gives and receives resources and provides value orientations. Thus, it is imperative to assess these institutions separately and in concert in order to understand the reciprocal effects and to design methods for dealing effectively with the outcomes.
The objectives of the Center are to identify and study the critical issues related to the family and the community and to encourage and disseminate information on appropriate interventions or preventative mechanisms. The Center meets these objectives through three major avenues: research, education, and public service.