The following projects were done by students in Tisch College’s Citizenship and Public Service (CPS) Scholars program during the 2008-2009 school year.
Adam Evans, History ‘11
Adam worked to effectively engage the students on the Boston Student Advisory Council (BSAC) and assisted them with producing various written projects throughout the school year. Working with a small subgroup of students, Adam produced a quarterly newsletter that was sent out to students, teachers, and administrators in the Boston Pubic Schools. He helped BSAC members write and publish their submissions, and worked with a group of BSAC graduates to plan and implement an alumni event. Additionally, Adam conducted research on policy issues and developed a BSAC website. Adam also assisted the BSAC writer in producing written pieces to be published in the Boston Globe’s “Teens in Print” newspaper..
Alice Tin, History ‘10
Alice’s goal was to explore and expand on the role of the arts in healthcare. Mentoring students in the Somerville middle schools through a program organized by the Tufts Music Department, Alice coordinated an opportunity for the middle school students to perform at the Somerville Hospital. Through this project she helped to highlight and harness the different streams of musical and linguistic expertise within the community to work towards a better quality of health care for Somerville citizens. Additionally, she continued to help with the Liaison Interpreters Program that she worked on her first year as a Scholar, and organized the ISPG/H’s annual flu vaccine clinic and immigrant health fair.
Allison Lawrence, International Relations ‘11
Alison worked with Groundwork Somerville’s elementary school gardens programs, running an after-school garden club at one school and coordinating a new program called “Butterflies are Teachers”. This new program combines 7th/8th graders with 2nd/3rd graders to learn about environmental and ecology issues as well as improve leadership and teaching skills for the older students. She was involved in this aspect of the project and do research on the original program in Bridgeport so that we can learn and grow from their experiences with the program. She created a systems guide that included compiling information on best practices and teaching.
Anna Smith, Economics ‘11
Anna worked to ensure that members of the Somerville community are active and informed participants in the planning and implementation process of the Green Line extension. Her work included outreach to Somerville residents from all backgrounds in the planning process, with a particular focus on low-income, immigrant, and non-English speaking community members. She organized and completed a land use survey in the neighborhoods surrounding Union Square. She determined methods to present data collected in the survey to residents of Somerville. Anna also conducted neighborhood-level community outreach by knocking on doors, posting flyers, and publicizing neighborhood meetings. She scheduled and conducted neighborhood meetings with local residents interested in the Green Line Community Corridor Planning process. Finally, she assisted with the planning and facilitation of city-wide meetings introducing the Green Line Community Corridor Planning process to local residents.
Arielle Carpenter, Psychology ‘10
Arielle was able to re-establish and expand a group a created on campus called FoodTalk. She created FoodTalk as a means a communication between Tufts students and Dining Services. In reinitiating the club, Arielle focused on creating a task force of Tufts students who are interested in healthy living. To do this, she planned and outreached out to many different groups of campus such as Greek life, Athletics, Residence Life, FIT, public health groups (SHAB, PHAT, PACT, etc.). She held the first meeting where we will discuss what works and what doesn’t work with dining on the Tufts campus and think of ways and suggestions to improve it. Arielle’s main event for the semester was a cooking demonstration, healthy dinner, and speaker which was open to the entire Tufts community.
Arya Meydani, Spanish ‘09
Arya worked with University of the Middle East (UME). Since UME is a well established program, Arya gained valuable experience in learning how to develop a group’s ideas into an actionable item. He learned more about the cross-cultural conflict that takes place in the Middle East and North Africa, and what steps can be taken to achieve cooperation in that region. While working with UME, Arya worked on The Teacher Education Institute (TEI) in Boston, the Civic Engagement Workshop (CEW) in Lebanon, and the Collaborative Arts Initiative (CAI) in Morocco. The work included event organization and management, project management/organization, researching potential faculty/participants for the aforementioned programs, and reviewing applications submitted for the aforementioned programs.
Chase Webber, ‘09 & Kelsey Bell, American Studies ‘10
The Somerville Community Language Bank connects small, local businesses and non-profits with bilingual Somerville residents and Tufts students, thereby benefiting a diverse and multilingual community. Chase and Kelsey worked to develop the Community Language Bank, expanding its clientele, forming long-lasting business relationships and building a base of support from within the community. Their primary aim was to see the Language Bank become a permanent entity, with the structure and self-sufficiency to consistently attend to the community’s translation and interpretation needs, through seasonal changes in the student body and the arrival and departure of future CPS Scholars. Chase and Kelsey handled general supervision and implementation of the Administrative Plan, overseeing changes to the website, an aggressive marketing campaign, the program of training of new interpreters and translators, as well as the general day-to-day operations of the language bank.
Chloe Poon, Community Health & Chinese ‘11
Chloe prepared a gap analysis of the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS) plans for the City of Medford. The SNS consists of pharmaceuticals and other medical materiel that states can request in the event of a public health emergency, such as pandemic influenza, or a man-made or natural disaster. Chloe evaluated the existing Emergency Dispensing Sites in Medford for their current inventory availability and flow. Chloe also identified any improvements that are needed in order to effectively serve the community in the case of emergency. She went to the six Emergency Dispensing Sites, 5 schools and Gnatcher Center, to assess their current emergency plans and identify any unmet needs and resources.
Christina LaSala, Child Development ‘11
Christina established a one-on-one program for children with learning disabilities, emotional, and behavioral issues in the Mystic Learning Center’s (MLC) after school program. Many of these children do not receive much one-to-one attention either at home, at school, or even at the Mystic. She established this program by enlisting Tufts students in the Child Development department who volunteer their time to spend a few hours a week working with a particular child. Christina needed to get to know the individual kids. She was given 5 target children who have special needs and are at some sort of risk (behaviorally, emotionally or both). She researched on accessibility of state funding for special needs kids and assisted in writing a grant for MLC. Christina researched Tufts’ resources and developed a list of interested volunteers.
Daniela Valenzuela, Economics ‘10
Daniela Valenzuela worked at East Somerville Main Streets, increasing the visibly of East Somerville Main Streets and strengthening the connection with the community. She coordinated several community outreach events at local businesses and in front of the office, and established sustainable neighborhood social events that took place on the first Tuesday of every month. Daniela was a key member of the team that helped Main Streets become a place for people to go for community activities.
Danielle Damm, ‘09
Danielle’s was an intern with IBM’s office of Corporate Social Responsibility and Research department. She researched current new media initiatives that are used for community organizing and collaboration and assessed how they can be implemented at IBM.
Dean Ladin, Political Science ‘10
Dean worked with the Middlesex District Attorney’s office. He developed and implemented the DA’s Juvenile Pre-Complaint Diversion Program throughout the county, specifically in Cambridge. The program offers juveniles who commit a criminal offense the opportunity to be diverted from the juvenile court system by performing community service or volunteering. This program prevents juveniles from having a court record, and allows young people a second chance.
Dena Greenblum, Community Health & International Relations ‘09
Dena promoted civic and political awareness, education, and advocacy among the National Student Partnerships (now LIFT) client base. The client base is composed of members of the low-income greater Somerville community facing a wide variety of challenges, such as inadequate housing, inaccessible health care, barriers based on immigration status, and a lack of employment opportunities. Additionally, she held a voter registration drive and mobilized community members to be involved in the political process. Dena also created a Client Board, in which a small group of NSP clients come together to discuss their experiences with NSP, their concerns about problems in their community, and the possible action steps.
Denisha McKenzie, ‘09
The Massachusetts Advocates for Children (MAC) is a non profit organization that provides advocacy work on behalf of children to decrease or eliminate barriers in life and education. The Boston School Reform Project is a program of MAC that helps to fight the educational injustices and inequalities that lead to underperformance and high drop out rates within the Boston Public Schools (BPS). The Trotter Elementary School has had such severe problems with the aforementioned issues that BPS has officially classified the school as a Superintendent School. With this classification the school will be provided with a myriad of additional resources, including a new principal, to address these issues in hopes of changing Trotter Elementary from a failing school to a thriving school. Denisha sponsored several initiatives including parent newsletters, parent educational sessions, parent-teacher conferences, individual family consultations, and family engagement activities. to address these issues. Denisha encouraged family and community involvement at the Trotter School to increase student achievement. The impact of these initiatives at the Trotter School helped to serve as a model that MAC can use for other schools within the Boston Public School District during this restructuring period. She compiled a list of recommendations of things that worked well in achieving these goals for use at other schools.
Diego Villalobos, ‘09
The Volunteer Corps Initiative brought youth from six Central American countries together for a five-day public service event and seminar in Costa Rica. Over the course of the five days, youth collaborated with the community of La Carpio, working in one of the most disadvantaged schools of the region. The Corps created solidarity, and social and environmental consciousness within the community through proactive environmental activities and personal development workshops focused on culture and the arts. Diego facilitated communication among the organizers and within delegations. The project in Costa Rica played a key role as the first event in a series of six events.
Duncan Pickard, History ‘10
Duncan hosted a Diversity Awareness Week in April. It was a week filled with discussions on various topics. Students, faculty and staff members were involved in several of these events.
Fanna Gamal, Political Science ‘10
Fanna researched the role of civic engagement within higher education and brought together people on working on a variety of issues to discuss civic engagement strategies. Through this project, she built a collaborative environment where experts, students and community leaders shared their understanding and knowledge.
Jennifer Bailey & Nora Chovanec, ‘09
Jen and Nora organized a national arts and social activism conference at Tufts University in spring 2009. Across college campuses in the United States, students regularly use artistic mediums to address the injustices they see in the world around them and universities are responding. At Tufts, there are numerous courses addressing the intersection of arts and social change in addition to the student-run, Social Justice Arts Initiative. Despite such a wide variety of programs internationally, there has never been a venue for students involved in such work to collaborate. They created a three day conference that involved speakers, workshops, performances, film screenings, gallery shows, and a community art project.
Jennica Allen, Child Development ‘11
Jennica worked at the Welcome Project. She built a stronger citywide community in Somerville by diminishing racism, empowering refugee and immigrant communities, and creating opportunities for residents of all backgrounds to work together to improve their social, economic, and personal well being. The Homework Club aims to help school age youth with academic work by providing tutoring during the week after school.
Jennifer Bollenbacher, Political Science ‘10Jennifer worked at the Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence on the 1000 Cranes campaign aimed at raising awareness about domestic violence. This five year campaign was in the beginning stages of development and was the first individual fundraising effort the organization has undertaken. Jennifer focused on youth and student outreach, education and awareness, developing marketing materials to target that population. This included social media and blogging, as well as print resources. She worked with the development team to problem solve and brainstorm ways to involve the other demographics.
Jenny Lau, American Studies ‘10
Jenny worked with Doug Brugge, Tisch College adjunct faculty member and associate professor of public health and family medicine, researching and surveying kids of families that were affected by asthma.
Jessica Oh, Biology ‘11
Groundwork Somerville and other community partners including STEP (Somerville Transportation Equity Partnership) and SCC (Somerville Community Corporation) led a participatory community planning process focusing on land-use including green and open space along the extended Green Line Corridor. Jessica’s work included historically disengaged populations, such as immigrants, low-moderate income residents and youth in this community process through visioning meetings and other educational tools and materials. Jessica facilitated the partnership between Groundwork Somerville and its key partners in this Green Line corridor planning process. She created a wiki for partners to share information and a website for Somerville residents containing basic information about the proposed Green Line corridor. Jessica researched suitable land-use database technology and helped to analyze the data.
Jessie Chamberlin, ‘09
Jessie was the, Local Outings Manager at Arts Rising, an organization under the Zing Foundation that pools money from a number of donors and awards it to artists and groups who are doing art for social change. She organized 3-5 local outings in major cities, such as San Francisco, New York, Minneapolis, and Boston. The outings were for donors and potential donors to go to a participatory or interactive show, exhibit, or performance about arts for social change. She engaged donors in their communities and was able to have them interested in joining Arts Rising and participated in the selection process of art proposals. She researched upcoming performances or exhibits and contacted the organization to arrange the event.
Juhee Chung, Sociology ‘11
Juhee promoted inclusion in afterschool programs for students with special needs by increasing afterschool and recreational opportunities in the Somerville area. She formulated and carried out a need-assessment survey on afterschool activities for students with special needs, developed and implemented a sustainable afterschool program, and assisted with the planning of Special Olympics events. She spent time at the Somerville schools in order to become familiar with the special education programs there and to develop a personal relationship with the students, families, and teachers. Juhee developed a community survey on afterschool activities for students with special needs which she used to plan and execute after school program events.
Juliana Ssemanda, ‘09
Juliana coordinated the Black Women’s Collective, an organization for women of color to receive support, advocacy and community while being active participants who engage the sphere of positive influence in their surrounding communities. The goal of Black Women’s Collective (BWC) is to create a safe and comfortable space that can hold a variety of topical discussions which women of color seek to understand on a deeper level. As the coordinator and co-leader of BWC, Juliana facilitated BWC meetings, delegated tasks to other members of the board in regards to funding and social events, and recruited students to continue and lead the organization.
Julie Gray, American Studies ‘11
Julie reinvigorated views of the Boys and Girls Clubs in each of their Middlesex host communities–Somerville, Cambridge, and Medford (with a primary focus on Somerville). She utilized the BE GREAT campaign, which is designed by the Boys and Girls Clubs of America. Julie worked on public relation and fundraising goals for the organization and found ways to utilize the empty space of the Club to generate additional revenue for the Club. Other responsibilities included quarterly newsletters, creating an email database of the BGCMC families, and organizing one open house per semester.
Kara Takasaki, Sociology ‘10
Kara created a parent and volunteer run Homework Club for Medford school children for the West Medford Community Center. The Center’s main goal is to build community among the diverse people in West Medford and Mystic River Valley using social, educational, cultural, health and recreational activities. Kara promoted the program to people in the community and recruited volunteers to participate in the program. She worked with parents and families in the community as well as other community organizations and school officials in order to connect the WMCC and homework club to various resources in the West Medford.
Kate Berson & Laura Zachary, ‘09
Kate and Laura worked at the International Institute of Boston (IIB) and helped the immigrant, refugee, and asylum populations that IIB serves to find affordable housing. They created a sustainable system for IIB to satisfy clients’ housing needs; they put together a manual, provided trainings for other staff in the future, and found an effective way of collecting and distributing donated furniture, appliances, and other household items. The clinics were for four hours each week for clients to come in and receive assistance with filing housing forms and applications. They were responsible for fostering relationships with flexible, culturally sensitive landlords.
Katherine Shelley, ‘09
Katherine increased culturally appropriate options to help residents of East Somerville increase their physical activity levels, adopt improved nutrition habits and build social support networks. To that end, she coordinated a Salsa/Zumba class in collaboration with the Cambridge Health Alliance Community Affairs Department and the Somerville Recreation Department. In addition, Kara engaged Tufts students and faculty as partners in long-term planning and implementation. She coordinated the efforts of SCHA, the Recreation Department, and the participating Tufts students. She expanded this program to include broader projects aimed at improving overall wellness of the class participants, as well as fostering a sense of class community.
Laura Bernescu, International Relations ‘10
Laura worked to streamline the operation of "Walk-Ride-Days" within the Cambridge and Somerville communities. She created incentives and acknowledgements for participants and sponsors of "Walk-Ride-Days," developed methods for sponsors and coordinators to check-in, included encouragement of special events and competitions, solicited more sponsors and organizations and planned a sponsor appreciation event.
Laura Hermam, ‘09 & Sarah Ullman, English ‘10
Laura and Sarah worked together on the CampusVoices election blog, engaging college students in the electoral process by encouraging them to use their voice to express opinions creatively. They uploaded their own content to the website on a weekly basis and reached out to Tufts students, student groups, professors, classes etc. on an ongoing basis to encouraged them to contribute to CampusVoices. Laura and Sarah encouraged students not only to vote but to actively participate in the shaping of the media landscape around the election.
Lena Andrews, ‘09
Lena engaged freshman residents of Haskell and Tilton Hall in active citizenship opportunities on and off campus. She provided residents with information on active citizenship and coordinated programming with Residence Life and a variety of other organizations, giving residents quality opportunities to engage in active citizenship. Lena also established an Active Citizenship committee composed of residents to help organize these programs and events.
Malek Al-Chalabi, ‘09
Malek analyzed climate change issues internationally as part of the Energy & Climate Program at the Stockholm Institute. Global and national climate change policy issues. He analyzed global climate issues, hydrology, compiled and wrote literature reviews for project reports.
Marcelo Norsworthy, ‘09
Marcelo facilitated a greater interaction between community organizations working in Somerville by creating a resource guide of current ESL programs in the city. He created awareness of the various ESL services being offered in the city and reduced overlap and increased effectiveness. He encouraged more collaboration among community organizations. He researched current resources guides and current ESL programs being offered. He created a resource guide that comprehensively lists and describes the ESL services offered in Somerville. The guide will be updated by the organization National Student Partnerships.
Mary Langan, ‘09
Mary worked to engage girls and young women in productive, interesting and intellectual pursuits that will help them develop as students and members of their communities. She provided a safe and supportive space for the girls. Mary helped them achieve their goals and helped them become more aware of the world around them, with a special focus on civil engagement. She was an assistant leader to a Medford Girl Scout Troop; Mary helped the leader design and executes programs and meetings. She was responsible for some meetings independently and advised them in larger pursuits such as their Bronze or Silver Awards. She exposed the Troop to the possibilities of Tufts University whether through meetings with faculty or students or exploring different facets of Tufts.
Matthew Kincaid, American Studies ‘11
Matthew empowered youth to reach the next level of leadership in their development at the organization, Asian Community Development Corporation (ACDC). He encouraged them through one on one contact and personal assistance. He worked with individual youth, meeting them where they were and assessing areas in which he could provide guidance or instruction. Matthew created and established leadership curriculum for the youth board that can be easily accessible and usable for the A-VOYCE youth in their future leadership and facilitation endeavors. Through these trainings A-VOYCE youth will be able to take the skills developed in the program and put them into action. He worked closely with the youth on the "Breaking the Barriers" program, an open mic event that allowed A-VOYCE youth and other young people to come together and share their voice. This event served as an outlet for youth in the greater Boston area and a medium for the participants to meet youth different from themselves.
Matthew Hibert, Biochemistry ‘11
Matthew’s project had three major goals. The first was to develop a model for an arts integration curriculum to be put before the Somerville school committee. The second was to increase the attendance at the concerts put on by the band and other musical groups in the Somerville Public Schools. The third was to develop a database of local artists. Matthew researched different arts integration models and how to implement an arts integrated curriculum in a school system successfully. Matthew also promoted the concerts in the winter and through advertising efforts and created a database of local artists, specifically those who could be interested in coming to the schools. Finally, he compiled an end of the year arts integration report for the Art Department at the Somerville Public Schools.
Michael Conroy, ‘09
Michael was trained and mediated small claim court cases at the Massachusetts District and Municipal Courts. He continued his summer work with Mediation Works Inc., a non-profit mediation firm in Boston. He established an awareness of mediation and the importance on the Tufts campus. He hosted a panel at Tufts for Tufts undergraduates, graduates, faculty and staff.
Michael Snyder, ‘09
Michael established an online map database of all major environmental justice campaigns in the Roxbury community for Alternatives for Community and Environment (ACE). In which ACE’s team of pro-bono lawyers (known as MEJAN) assisted. He examined ACE campaign archives from past years and updated them to the standards of the current record keeping. Once major campaigns had been identified, the community members involved in those campaigns were interviewed to obtain details and information that may have been lost in the archives. The information was uploaded onto an online map of Roxbury, with the location of different campaigns, to serve as a visual indicator of all of ACE’s successes in the community. It included photography and video as well as text.
Namibia Lebron-Torres, Anthropology ‘11
Namibia worked at Centro Presente in Somerville. She ran a successful after- school tutor program for high schools students. Tufts students were the volunteers and tutored the students in various subjects. She was able students dedicated to helping others and a mentor ship relationship developed. Namibia organized college tours at near by schools and implemented, and managed academic practice and skill-building activities for the
Nathan Tanaka, ‘09
Nathan created and coordinated a sustainable rock band program at Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center. He recruited students and hosted to BCNC rock band handbook that will outline the specifics in keeping the band program sustained. The program taught beginners how to play different instruments and explored playing music. Tanaka also coordinated building skills workshop, how to give and take constructive criticism, how to compose music, how to record music, how to advertise music and they put on an end of year concert. They recorded and wrote original songs with older bands.
Nelson Leese, ‘09
Nelson worked at the Asian Task Force Against Domestic Violence (ATASK) provided support to the ATASK shelter and the community-based service office. Nelson gained valuable skills and knowledge on working on domestic violence issues in cultural enclave. He compiled and updated a resources directory for ATASK, researched project on the history of Asian immigrants in the U.S.to educate ATASK staff/volunteers. Nelson managed clients’ cases under supervision of staff, covered the hotline and taught life skills workshops
Piyali Kundu, International Relations‘10
Piyali worked with Let’s Get Ready in Somerville to provide free SAT coaching and college search mentoring to under-served Somerville High school Students. The students completed a 10-week program in which coaches recruited from the Tufts student body taught critical writing/reading and math SAT classes to a group of five high school students. She recruited all the coaches; trained coaches on their college access duties; delegated head math and reading coaches to keep track of the coaches’ progress; tracked the progress of students benefiting from the program; set up college choice programming such as a financial aid panel and college trips; sustained contact with parents for the duration of the program and handled all budgetary issues.
Rachel Brown, International Relations ‘10
Rachel worked with Community Action Agency of Somerville (CAAS). She worked at Clarendon Hills Housing Development in order to create a sustainable long-term effort to with community members to create a strong community. In particular, she created an after school program for the children in the housing development. The program was an extension of Hillel’s Read by the River initiative and was staffed by Tufts students. The program had educational value, and each day the kids had the option to receive homework help. Activities included, writing, drawing, teaching constructive games, and a health day created by Vitality during which kids will learn how to make a healthy snack and will write and illustrate the recipe.
Sandi Tang, ‘09
Sandi worked with the Boston Chinatown Neighborhood Center, to create an after-school program that taught the benefits of using arts as a tool for social change, particularly through T-shirt making. The program offered youth their own vehicle of expression – since what a person wears is largely a personal choice. Local Boston and Chinatown middle school and high school youth created t-shirts and sold them at local fairs and exhibits. Sandi planned workshops and set up field trips, offered positive critique, and organized and curated the final gallery show.
Terhys Persad, Child Development ‘11
Terhys worked with the Visiting Nurses Association Senior Living Community increased the diversity of the residents of their new facility opening in December. She worked on a public campaign to appeal to diverse groups through community meetings.
Vince Booker, English ‘09
Vince directed the Emerging Black Leaders. His work included, strategic planning for the Board of Directors, organized and met with our Board of Advisers, coordinating several service & youth projects, in addition to overseeing the planning of our Annual Emerging Black Leader’s Symposium (EBLS). The goals of this project are to recruit and engage Tufts University undergraduate students and provide them with multiple opportunities to offer voluntary services to the Medford and Somerville metropolitan communities.
Vivian Haime, Psychology ‘11
Vivian worked at the Access Project in Boston on health care issues. In particular, around college students to organize around issues of inadequate health insurance coverage both at Tufts and statewide and she designed a community research and organized a project to address the health insurance needs of Somerville residents.