A Brief History of UERU

The Association for Undergraduate Education at Research Universities (UERU, pronounced "You-Roo") was established as the Reinvention Center in 2000 following the 1998 publication of the Boyer Commission report, Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for America’s Research Universities. Shirley Strum Kenny, chair of the Boyer Commission and President of the State University of New York at Stony Brook, concluded that the Commission’s vision could best be implemented by creating a national network of research universities committed to strengthening undergraduate education. Originally hosted by Stony Brook University, the organization has relocated twice, first to the University of Miami in 2007 and then to Colorado State University in 2013, where it currently resides.

Since its founding, UERU has evolved into an action-oriented network of UVPs and others who work collaboratively to advance change on their campuses. In 2021, UERU received a $1.9 million grant from Ascendium Education Group, the largest philanthropic grant in the organization's history, to support an innovative Curricular Analytics Project to validate the relationship between curricular complexity and student success. In 2022, with support from the Raikes Foundation and the Suder Foundation, UERU published The Equity/Excellence Imperative: A Blueprint for Undergraduate Education at Research Universitiesin both print and open-source ebook formats. Over 20,000 copies were downloaded to over 14,000 unique IP addresses in the Report’s first 15 months of availability. A Johns Hopkins University Press open-source volume, The Equity/Excellence Imperative in Action (expected in 2025 with support from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation), will build upon Boyer 2030 Report provocations and illustrate changes taking place at dozens of UERU member and non-member institutions alike.

The Boyer Commission Report

In 1998, the Boyer Commission on Educating Undergraduates in the Research University published Reinventing Undergraduate Education: A Blueprint for America's Research Universities. This landmark document was the impetus for UERU's creation.

Read the Report


Key milestones in UERU's history


The Boyer Commission Report

The report offered a vision of undergraduate education at research universities that builds on their unique assets and is synergistic with their research and graduate missions.



The Reinvention Center was established in April 2000 as the only national organization to focus on undergraduate education exclusively at research universities.


The UVP Network

The Reinvention Center creates a dedicated network for faculty who have all-university (or all-college) administrative responsibilities for undergraduate education.



The Center became a member-owned, fee-based consortium. The UVPs were the key institutional spokespersons for the value of participating in the Center’s work as 65 public and private research universities agreed to become Charter Members in 2007.


The Reinvention Collaborative

The Board changed the name of the Reinvention Center to the Reinvention Collaborative (although still the “RC” informally).


Virtual Offerings

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, the RC also began to expand virtual offerings, including a series of Town Halls to address pressing issues facing academic leaders, webinars, other workshops and colloquia based on member interests and needs; and biweekly Hot Topics sessions for UVPs to consult with their colleagues.



The Board changes the Reinvention Collaborative’s name to the Association for Undergraduate Education at Research Universities (UERU) to better reflect the organization’s mission and evolution into a national higher education professional association through its many new initiatives and expanded reach. 


The Boyer 2030 Commission

The Association for Undergraduate Education at Research Universities convened the Boyer 2030 Commission, charged with designing a 2030 Blueprint for Excellence & Equity in Undergraduate Education at U.S. Research Universities.