Expanding Horizons project a focus of at-risk forum on post-high-school programs at the 2016 Glass Art Society Conference
On Friday, June 10th, the Glass Art Society conference in Corning, New York, will host an in-depth discussion of opportunities for students following their graduation from at-risk programs that use glass as a tool to teach life lessons. Since 2014, the Robert Minkoff Foundation has organized and moderated presentations at the annual GAS conferences in order to bring together the at-risk programs around the country to share experiences and best practices. The panel taking place from 3:30 PM to 5 PM at the Corning Inc. auditorium on June 10th, five panelists will discuss the topic: "What Next? Opportunities for At-Risk Youth After High School." Moderated by Andrew Page, director of the Minkoff Foundation, the panelists include Hector Daniel Maldonado, a graduate of GlassRoots in Newark, New Jersey; Barbara Heisler, GlassRoots executive director; Tracy Kirchmann, education manager at Ignite Glassworks in Chicago; Robert Minkoff, managing trustee of the Minkoff Foundation, and Amy Schwartz, director of the Studio at the Corning Museum of glass. Please join us to learn about how various programs are helping their graduates move from students to professional artists, and join the discussion with a question-and-answer session.
The executive directors of Hilltop Artists in Residence in Tacoma, Washington, and GlassRoots in Newark, New Jersey, joined representatives of programs in Chicago and Corning, New York, on stage at the 2015 Glass Art Society conference to discuss best practices. To make the most of the limited time, and unique opportunity to bring together leaders from this field, the panel divided up into breakout sessions, reconvening at the close of the panel discussion to share what transpired in each group.
The panelists and topics discussed were:
Pearl Dick, the director of the GlassWorks program in Chicago, spoke about ways that glass art can be used as therapy for dealing with the trauma of gun violence with an in-depth discussion of a pilot program she is working on with the University of Chicago and Comer Children's Hospital.
Hilltop Artists in Residence executive director Kit Evans (with instructor Tony Sorgenfrei) discussed how Hilltop has been working with the juvenile justice system for seven years, as well as future plans to work with the Tacoma court system.
GlassRoots executive director Barbara Heisler shared why GlassRoots has launched a scientific glassblowing apprentice program, how it was set up, and early indications of results.
Tracy Kirchmann, who heads up a Chicago nonprofit called STEAM Works explored ideas for what opportunities there are for graduates of at-risk glass programs at the high-school level.
Minkoff Foundation managing trustee Robert Minkoff offered a case study of developing relationships with funders. He provided a history of how the Minkoff Foundation connected with the glass program at Salem County Community College, where it now funds multiple full-scholarships for students.
Jessica Moore, special projects coordinator at the Studio at the Corning Museum of Glass talked about the skills we look to foster in an at-risk program, and how they are emphasized at the programming at the Corning Studio. She also spoke about the Expanding Horizons initiative at Corning that debuts in Julhy 2015 and offers the most promising students of glass programs a week-long intensive experience that includes information about college glass programs.
The heads of the at-risk youth glass programs at Hilltop, GlassRoots, Ignite, and the Corning Studio will discuss the biggest issues facing the field in a panel discussion at the Glass Art Society 2015 conference, taking place in San Jose, California.
Since being founded in early 2001, has offered after-school programs in glass art to at-risk youth in and around Newark, New Jersey. They've also gone beyond art classes to offer training in business skills important to careers in the arts but applicable to a wide range of professions. Now, thanks to a major grant from the Agnes Varis Charitable Trust, GlassRoots will be able to further expand that reach with a new apprenticeship in scientific glassblowing.
To learn more, see the article at GLASS Quarterly Hot Sheet.
Click over to our "Articles" page for a valuable informational essay from the pioneering at-risk youth program Hilltop Artists in Residence, the nonprofit that started it all in 1994 in Tacoma, Washington. How does an at-risk youth program track the effectiveness of its programs? As funders are increasingly looking for quantifiable measures of the impact of programs, the practical advice offered in this article could hold the key for other at-risk programs to unlock new sources of support. Thanks to Kit Evans and her team at Hilltop for sharing such valuable information with www.atriskglass.org.
The 2014 Glass Art Society Conference got underway on Friday, March 21st, with an At-Risk Youth Panel that brought together representatives from the top programs from around the U.S. to talk about what they were doing and to share their perspective on what works. That evening, a reception at Little Black Pearl celebrated the glass program at a public high school in the South Side of Chicago. You can listen to an audio transcript of the presentations here and view some pictures from the talk and reception below.
We're looking forward to an amazing opportunity to exchange ideas, celebrate student work, and witness an extraordinary performance. Feel free to share this postcard.
theaster gates will perform with little black pearl glassblowing students at special event on the evening of friday, march 21 at 5:30 pm
GAS Conference Keynote Speaker and renown multimedia artist Theaster Gates will perform alongside glassblowing students from the Little Black Pearl Art & Design Academy in a special Friday night event that will include an exhibition and reception, with further opportunities for networking with other at-risk youth programs. The performance piece will begin at 6 PM at Little Black Pearl, with the reception to follow immediately. Buses will run from the conference's Palmer House to Little Black Pearl beginning at 5:30PM, and will also return guests back to the Palmer House beginning at 8PM
Where: Little Black Pearl Art and Design Academy
1060 E. Greenwood Drive. Chicago Il 60653
Light appetizers and beverages will be the reception and we hope all of you can be there!
Tracy Kirchman, director of the glass education program at Little Black Pearl Art & Design Academy, is organizing two exhibitions for a Friday evening event at the school.
First is an exhibition of student works.
Says Tracy: "We ask that you let us know how many pieces you plan to display as soon as possible. We need to know how many pedestals we need. We also have only one day to set this show up because we are a school and use all of the building on a regular basis so I ask that you consider this in your selection of work."
The goal is to exhibit at least one piece from each at-risk youth program attending the GAS conference.
Says Tracy: "These can be individual or group pieces...have fun with it! You can ship work or deliver it no later than Wednesday March 19th from 8AM-5PM (we can make arrangements for return shipping or you may take your glass with you after the conference)."
Before you send it, make sure it will work and get in touch with Tracy. "Please email me a proposal of what you would like to display to represent your program as by Friday Feb 21st. I would also like to have literature about all of the programs at the show, so it would be great if you could send that along as well."
Second is an exhibition of a collaboration between students from all programs.
In addition to the display of individual work, Tracy is organizing a collaborative glass piece with elements created by students in all of the programs, even those who are not able to attend the GAS conference. She did a similar project commemorating all of the kids under 18 who were victims of gun violence here at LBP and it was stunning.
Here is more about the project from Tracy:
"Our idea was to have each organization make flowers that we can hang around the Atrium in our space from each group. It would be an easy project for our kids to create, and if we have enough of them it will look amazing! Here is a picture of the space where we will be hosting the reception and exhibtion. Pearl and I talked about hanging the flowers from the railing on the second floor, so they would be illuminated by the white lights behind them (see the space pictured above).
"I am open to the flowers being all shapes and sizes but I do ask that you please wire them to be hung (ex. a loop of wire attached to each flower that we can run a piece of rope through to make a garland) I am open to ideas on this and it would be great if everyone could send pictures.
"Again we are a school so we have only got a limited amount of time to set up. My students and I are ridiculously busy with the performance part of this event but we are willing to help in anyway that we can.
"I am looking forward to meeting all of you and hearing all of your ideas. Please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns. "
Tracy M. Kirchmann, MFA/BFA
Little Black Pearl Art and Design Academy
Glass Artist and Educator
On Friday, March 21st, at 10:30 AM, program heads, instructors, students, and administrators from some of the leading at-risk youth programs in the US will gather at a conference room at the Palmer House for a facilitated discussion of using glass education to reach at-risk youth. Moderated by Minkoff Foundation director Andrew Page, the goal is to create bridges between organizations that might not be connected despite working in the same field. We will begin with brief introductions of all programs in attendance. We will then break into smaller groups organized around key areas of interest. The group will reconvene at the end of the forum to share the results of their dialogues, and to get feedback from the rest of the attendees.