Research Publication Title

Artistically Approaching Solidarity and Leaving Ego Behind: Community Mural-Making in Harrisburg

Major

Liberal Studies

Faculty Mentor(s)

Sandra E. Godwin, Valerie Aranda

Abstract

Participatory Action Research is a powerful tool used to Òbridge the gapÓ between Universities and Communities who vary considerably in terms of demographic composition. During the Spring 2014 Semester, Sociologist Sandra Godwin and Muralist Valerie Aranda co-taught a course using the framework of participatory action research (Smith 1997, Friere 1970) that seeks to equate existing power between individuals who are often ignored in the academic realm such as students and oppressed populations. The course involved the collaboration and co-creation of the mural between students and a marginalized community. Upon completion of this course, sociology student, Ashlyn Douglas, conducted a qualitative interview study in order to gauge the experience of her peers in the course. This research project adds to the existing literature that draws on Òstudent voice workÓ (Bucher, Seale 2012, Cook-Sather 2009) that encourages student-faculty relationships and uses in-depth course evaluations from students to enhance their learning experience. We will focus on the challenges experienced by both students and faculty members in a community-based classroom while highlighting the triumphs experienced. Ultimately, we determined that students should receive more training before entering communities that differ in terms of race, age, and social class. We will discuss how to approach topics such as cultural humility and how to have an effective dialogue on race (IMPACT Conference 2015, Weed and Gideny).

Start Date

10-4-2015 10:15 AM

End Date

10-4-2015 11:15 AM

Location

HSB 304

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Apr 10th, 10:15 AM Apr 10th, 11:15 AM

Artistically Approaching Solidarity and Leaving Ego Behind: Community Mural-Making in Harrisburg

HSB 304

Participatory Action Research is a powerful tool used to Òbridge the gapÓ between Universities and Communities who vary considerably in terms of demographic composition. During the Spring 2014 Semester, Sociologist Sandra Godwin and Muralist Valerie Aranda co-taught a course using the framework of participatory action research (Smith 1997, Friere 1970) that seeks to equate existing power between individuals who are often ignored in the academic realm such as students and oppressed populations. The course involved the collaboration and co-creation of the mural between students and a marginalized community. Upon completion of this course, sociology student, Ashlyn Douglas, conducted a qualitative interview study in order to gauge the experience of her peers in the course. This research project adds to the existing literature that draws on Òstudent voice workÓ (Bucher, Seale 2012, Cook-Sather 2009) that encourages student-faculty relationships and uses in-depth course evaluations from students to enhance their learning experience. We will focus on the challenges experienced by both students and faculty members in a community-based classroom while highlighting the triumphs experienced. Ultimately, we determined that students should receive more training before entering communities that differ in terms of race, age, and social class. We will discuss how to approach topics such as cultural humility and how to have an effective dialogue on race (IMPACT Conference 2015, Weed and Gideny).