PCA&D & Lancaster: Creative Community Engagement

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Friday, December 7th, 2018

The morning of the Presidential Installation, October 30, President Michael Molla and the College launched PCA&D & Lancaster: Creative Community Engagement throughout Lancaster.

According to Molla, “We recognize the merit of first-hand community engagement, and the inherent value of connecting, engaging and learning from and with the residents, organizations and community members. Therefore, teams of students, alumni, faculty and staff spread throughout Lancaster to use art, design and creative problem solving to support area community organizations.”

Teams of PCA&D students, faculty, trustees, and staff participated in engagement projects using art-and-design as solutions to problem solving and assist area community organizations.

The event was bookended by a kickoff breakfast, with community engagement tips from Michael Simpson of The Stone Independent School, Lancaster, and a celebratory lunch before the Installation ceremony.

“In Lancaster,” Simpson told the art students, “your work matters to us. You are about the head into a city that was saved by artists. We are twenty years into a revival in this city which was spearheaded by designers and urban planners and visual artists who wanted to completely reimagine the community and the culture of a city that desperately lacked both.“That work is not complete. The Great Lancaster Revival has not reached all of Lancaster.”

Before sending the PCA&D students off to work on their various community projects, , Simpson told students, “You have an opportunity to serve a community that was built by artists. The artists in this room have a unique obligation to the world.”

Simpson quoted Ralph Waldo Emerson who said, “Genius is the activity which repairs the decay of things.” He urged the students to go out and repair the decay of things, extorting them that with a theme of Emerson’s – the Republic depends on its artists.

We’re delighted to thank our community partner organizations for the opportunity to help our students grow:

  • Arch Street Center. Students and Arch Street members created a gallery wall & expression board for this non-profit recreational center for adults living with serious mental illness.
  • Bridge & Revelo. Students created an awareness campaign for Bridge, which shares cultural experiences across the globe through meals, dance and informational discussions of refugee communities living in Lancaster. Students also participated in video storytelling of the Lancaster immigrant experience with Revelo, led by PCA&D alumni.
  • C.A.S.E. Students created an informative and educational window display for Lancaster County Campaign Against Sexual Exploitation of Children (C.A.S.E.)
  • City of Lancaster. Students helped to tell the story of Lancaster’s Atlantic Avenue using found objects for a revitalization project, of one of the City’s Office of Neighborhood Initiatives for Neighborhood Improvement.
  • Common Wheel. Students created a space to highlight the seasonal initiatives of this nonprofit that transforms lives and the community through Bike Culture
  • Crispus Attucks. Students designed props for a Halloween fundraiser for this community center that improves the quality of life for youth and families in Lancaster and by offering programs and cultural events which preserve the area’s African American heritage.
  • Friendship Heart Gallery. Students worked with the gallery’s artists to create a window display to feature the work of the organization’s artists with intellectual disabilities.
  • Fulton Elementary. Students designed a literary inspired Little Free Library for elementary school students and their families
  • Lancaster County Conservancy. Students designed invasive species educational materials and rain barrels to support the organization whose purpose is to maintain carefully selected portions of the county’s open areas in their natural state.
  • Lancaster Cooperative Preschool. Students guided young artists, ages 3- 5, in Creative Exploration through making sculptures that express emotion.
  • Lancaster Public Arts (T.A.P.). Students photographed and cataloged potential public spaces for Temporary Art Projects throughout Lancaster
  • L.E.A.D.S. Students designed and created holiday décor for the streets of Lancaster with this volunteer-based non-profit that works to maintain Lancaster City’s beauty through decorating and gardening
  • League of Women Voters. Students designed a logo to reach a new generation of voters for the non-partisan political organization that encourages informed and active participation in government.
  • North Museum of Nature & Science. Students designed and painted a display for this natural history museum’s taxidermied weasel, featuring accurate representation of the animal’s habitat.
  • School District of Lancaster. Students guided 5th grade schoolchildren in hands-on Career Exploration in the Arts.
  • The day wrapped up, following an the Installation Ceremony, with a Community Celebration, in the PCA&D Atrium to culminate the day of celebration with food from the many traditions that represent Lancaster and music. All elements of the celebration will be “of Lancaster.”“’PCAD & Lancaster: Creative Community Engagement,’ is an initiative enabling students to share their creative skills throughout Lancaster with area partners. The inherent value of connecting, engaging and learning from and with the residents, organizations and community member cannot be underestimated,” said Molla

View the activities of “PCA&D & Lancaster: Creative Community Engagement, in this video created by PCA&D students Ellie Cochran, Joseph Bend and Karla Daher Urgiles.