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Lawrence University will share in a $75,000 grant awarded by the New York-based Dana Foundation as part of a five-campus consortium working with the ArtsBridge America program.

Joining Lawrence as grant recipients were the University of California, Berkeley, the University of Utah, the University of California, San Diego and Purchase College, State University of New York.

Founded in 1996 at the University of California, Irvine by current Lawrence president Jill Beck, ArtsBridge America is an arts education and outreach program that works with schools throughout the country. The program partners university arts students with a K-12 teacher to introduce interdisciplinary arts instruction through a variety of collaborative projects to create and implement lessons that integrate the arts with the core curriculum.

Nationally headquartered at Lawrence, the ArtsBridge America program currently supports arts curriculum initiatives with more than 300,000 students nationwide through 21 universities in 13 states.

Earlier this year, Lawrence launched its first local ArtsBridge program with 13 Lawrence “ArtsBridge Scholars” working with more than 300 Fox Valley students from kindergarteners to high school seniors on nine different projects.

“As the number of university partner institutions joining the ArtsBridge America network continues to grow, we need to recognize the importance of assessing scholar preparation for students working in and with schools to bring more arts education to our nation’s children,” said Jasmine Yep, national coordinator of ArtsBridge America. “With the generous support from the Dana Foundation, we will be able to collect data and analyze scholar preparation and project planning at a number of ArtsBridge campuses. By developing methods for scholar training, ArtsBridge America continues to look at ways in which we can better prepare our scholars as teaching artists.

“This grant will enable Lawrence to better support its ArtsBridge scholars in project planning and teaching methods throughout their individual projects,” Yep added. “Lawrence ArtsBridge scholars are working hard to promote creativity not only through music, theatre and visual arts, but also through critical thinking skills in science and language arts.

“Not all children are able to experience the arts as an audience member of a professional performance or exhibition, but through ArtsBridge projects here in the Fox Valley as well as in communities across the country, students are able to take pride in the art that they are creating and performing.”

Founded in 1950, the Dana Foundation is a private philanthropic organization that supports initiatives in education, science and health. Its interests in education focus on innovative development programs that facilitate improved teaching of the performing arts in public schools.