As Director of WIUT’s new Center for Policy Research and Outreach (CPRO), I am excited because I believe in and practice applied research. When research works, it results in stronger policy and practice. The Center builds on WIUT’s 17 years of research experience. CPRO seeks to strengthen and expand research practice across campus while linking our expertise to new questions, opportunities and partners (local and international). Research happens across each of WIUT’s areas of study and goes hand-in-hand with teaching. The Center encourages more collaboration and helps academics and students work across disciplines. We can build our capacity for research as we undertake more ambitious studies and learn from our shared experience. To succeed, CPRO must build on a healthy positive research culture supporting more flexibility and choice.