Who We Are

The Coalition of Urban Serving Universities (USU) is a university president-led organization committed to enhancing urban university engagement to increase prosperity and opportunity in our nation's cities and to tackling key urban challenges.

USU is a 501 (c) 6 membership organization, which has established a permanent partnership with the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) to share a joint USU/APLU Office of Urban Initiatives. 

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Stephen Percy, President, Portland State University

Mission & Values

USU institutions seek to create sustainable, affordable, and innovative urban communities free of poverty and inequitable growth as measured by reduction in gaps across economic, social, environmental, education, and health outcomes across its learners and residents. To better our institutions we focus on:

  • Diversity & Inclusion

  • Engagement

  • Innovation

  • Future

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Courtesy of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis

USU Focus Areas

We revised our objectives and repurposed our strands, with the new focus on (1) Improving the Health of a Diverse Population, (2) Fostering Student Achievement, (3) 21st Century Workforce, and (4) Advancing Racial Equity & Justice. 


Resources are organized within each initiative page. 

Improving the Health of a Diverse Population

USU’s Health initiative aims to expand and enhance a diverse, culturally sensitive, and prepared health and scientific workforce to improve health and health equity. Member institutions engage in national collaborations to increase the use of data and scientific evidence for university interventions, and to scale solutions across our network.

Courtesy of Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis