James M. Jeffords Center for Policy Research



As a land grant university, the only comprehensive research university in Vermont, and a national research leader in many fields, the University of Vermont has the obligation and the potential to play a significant role in fundamental research, as well as evaluation and analysis of policies and programs that affect our youth and the public at large in a variety of disciplines critical to the nation’s future.

In recognition of this, the University established the James M. Jeffords Center, so named to honor former United States Senator James M. Jeffords for his long and distinguished service to Vermont and the nation. The Center is is currently funded through the U.S. Department of Education Fund for the Improvement of Education.

Through rigorous, scientifically-based research and evaluation, education, training and outreach, the Jeffords Center will enhance the overall well-being and educational success of our nation’s youth, and support the public’s efforts to address complex and challenging issues in education, health, the environment, and government. In doing so, the Center will develop the capacity of individuals and organizations to address significant and emerging issues.


The mission of the Jeffords Center is to provide the analysis and information required to promote effective policy decisions in education, the environment, health care, and effective government that are signatures of excellence at the University of Vermont. It will analyze and inform the development of educational systems and public policies that will positively impact the lives of our children and youth. The Center will bring together interdisciplinary programs and scholars, and will collaborate with academic leaders, administrators, students, and policy makers to assess and support the development of policies and practices that lead to positive outcomes to our nation’s challenges. The Center will combine academic excellence and practical expertise to support the development of effective solutions to policy challenges which are increasingly complex and multidimensional.

Specifically, the Center will serve the students of the State of Vermont, and through demonstrated success, the nation – from early childhood through post-secondary and adult, lifelong learning. Through its evidence-based research and variety of programs, it will provide insight to inform health, education, environmental and governmental public policy affecting children and youth at the local, state, and national level.

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