Investing in Creativity and Authenticity – Building an Expanded Definition of Arts Education


What were your first arts internships or jobs like? How old were you when they happened? What have you carried with you from those experiences — as a best practice or as something from which to learn and grow? This session engages participants to actively reflect upon, brainstorm about and discuss the role that pre-professional training has in supporting a well-rounded arts education through a case study of the Bloomberg Arts Internship (BAI) Program in Baltimore. A member of the evaluation team at WolfBrown, a staff member from Baltimore’s program office at Young Audiences Maryland and an alum from the program share more about lived experiences, successes and learnings from BAI. More specifically, listeners will learn about the value of investing early and regularly in diverse talent and the need to amplify school year teachings with workplace experiences to ground and celebrate professional aspirations in the arts and culture field. Ultimately, the session encourages all participants to commit to expanding their understanding of arts education.


Jennifer Zheng, Young Audiences/Arts for Learning Maryland
Kathleen Hill, Senior Associate for Research and Outreach, WolfBrown
Kristina Berdan, Education Director, Young Audiences/Arts for Learning Maryland

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Author profile

Title: 2280 Pasos Bajo un Cielo Nublado | Artist: Hernán Jourdan | Medium: Film

When I was asked to create a work of art exploring literacy, I wanted to create a dance but I had no dancers or a studio, so I chose to use my own body in the space I had, my yard. Fluent Nature is video of micro-choreography that explores what cannot be expressed with words, how nature has its own language, and how placing the human body in nature changes the story.

Title: What Is Me and What Is Not Me | Artist: Alex Chadwell | Medium: Music

My thinking on arts and literacy centers around the concept of literacies and artmaking as both sense-making and meaning-making processes that organically and inevitably overlap, intersect, and reciprocate. Compositionally, What is me and what is not me is a sound collage of sorts (there is no notation for the piece, and I'd be hard pressed to recreate it accurately) that abstractly and aurally represents the relationships between literacies and artmaking.

Title: A Curious Honeybee | Artist: Gideon Young | Medium: Film

Offering welcome through traditional and digital elements of literacy, A Curious Honeybee provides an experiential learning environment by activating visual, musical, natural, and emotional literacies.

Title: Tercera Llamada | Artist: Karilú Forshee | Medium: Audio

La Carpa Theatre is a project that I am currently directing in the Detroit Latinx community. The project aims to strengthen and uplift youth voices through devised theatre, in the style of the Mexican Carpas. This audio was created in the theatrical environment envisioned for our project. The ways in which literacies are re-defined are at the heart of La Carpa Theatre's mission.

Title: Literaseas | Artist: MJ Robinson | Medium: Graphite and ink on paper with digital edits

Title: A Riddle | Artist: MJ Robinson | Medium: Graphite on paper with digital edits

Title: False Binaries | Artist: MJ Robinson | Medium: Graphite on paper with digital edits