Social Justice Challenge

Welcome to my first blog post! Here I will be sharing and updating the public on some of the projects I am working on and share my general interests. If you don’t already know who I am check out my About me.  Thanks for visiting and hope you enjoy the content I put up here!

So back in September a professor of mine told me to submit a proposal for a Social Justice Challenge hosted by Rutgers University- Newark School of Public Affairs and Administration (SPAA). I asked a friend of mine, Kate,  if she was willing to join me on putting forth a proposal and luckily she said yes.

On October 30th we were notified that our proposal was accepted for the National Tract and we were 1 of 4 finalists who will be competing for the seed money ($5,000) to get our project started. It is our hope that our project will be selected as the winner so that we can start our project in Newark and then implement our program in other cities across the country. Posted below is the abstract for our program and after November 23rd I’ll post the complete proposal and timeline.


Art Works, a summer program, aims to empower, educate, inform, inspire, build community, and provide a platform for civic engagement. Art Works will be conducted over five weeks in June, in Newark, and will work to engage 300 members of the Newark community. In the wake of the economic crisis of 2008, reduction in funding has impacted education across the United States; however, the primarily targeted programs are visual and performing arts. Numerous studies have shown that well-rounded education promotes substantially greater success rates, particularly among students of low socioeconomic status. It is our hope that this supplementary program will engage the community and provide an opportunity for community members to participate in active discussion through artistic expression through the use of the following themes:

  1. Social Justice and Me
  2. Art as a Storytelling Tool
  3. How do you see Newark?
  4. What will the future look like?

Our themes along with the variety of art forms used will be used to aid in constructive expressive art that captures what residents hope to see happen within their communities, share their struggles, communicate ideas thus providing empowerment and increasing efficacy. Art Works will achieve its goal though engagement and active cooperation with the city of Newark, local non-profits, teachers, university students, community leaders, and other volunteers.

Looking to get some feedback we created a short survey online asking our networks about their interest in participating and their experience with different artistic mediums. Out of curiosity for more public feedback on social justice issues, we ended the survey with an open ended question asking “What do you think is the greatest challenge facing urban communities today?” Below is an image that shows the most used words(larger words-more frequent & smaller words- less frequent).


If you are interested in seeing our presentation you can view it on Monday November 23rd at  10:30 am as we present it to a panel of Social Justice professionals and a chance at $5,000. Register by clicking here.


If you have any further questions or comments feel free to leave a comment or send me an e-mail.



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