5 Things to Know About the UA Center for Economic Development

5 Things to Know About the UA Center for Economic Development

Helping communities succeed takes planning, resources and collaboration. The University of Alabama Center for Economic Development has that expertise, and it works to solve real-world problems and grow Alabama’s economy.

Here are five things to know about UACED:

The UA Center for Economic Development works to make Alabama communities stronger.

UACED is an economic outreach unit committed to strengthening Alabama communities by providing technical assistance. Its asset-based planning approach helps communities, agencies and organizations address challenges and leverage various economic development opportunities. Former UA System Chancellor Malcolm Portera founded UACED in 1989, and The University of Alabama System Board of Trustees approved it. To this day the center continues a long-standing tradition of helping communities succeed.

The center works in all 67 Alabama counties.

There’s a chance that if you need to get something done in Alabama, UACED has connections in that county or community. The center works statewide using professional UA staff and customized project teams to provide technical assistance to help solve problems. 

UACED staff have a wide range of expertise. 

The small but mighty center’s staff offers economic development services in the following areas:

  • Tourism, such as the Alabama Mural Trail.
  • Outdoor recreation.
  • Community development.
  • Strategic planning.
  • Leadership development.
  • Workforce and education.
  • Equity.
  • Marketing and more. 

Partners make the world go ‘round at UACED.

UACED values partnerships, not only within UA but also with external agencies, including state and federal organizations, other universities and private sector professionals. Indeed, UACED just won the Alabama Tourism Department’s Partnership of the Year Award for efforts to support and enhance birding tourism and education in the state.

Students can support the state of Alabama by working with the center.

This isn’t a ‘fetching coffee’ type of internship. UA students are vital to the center’s day-to-day functions. In so doing, they help the UACED team assist in solving real-world problems and grow the state’s economy.

Here’s a glimpse into one of UACED’s collaborations, the healing zones project of the Equitable Neighborhoods Initiative.