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The 2017 Under 40 Forum report was released this morning by the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute, the Clinton School of Public Service, Arkansas Business and the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal. The report is being mailed to political, business and community leaders across the state and can be viewed online at www.rockefellerinstitute.org/2017under40report.
The report summarizes the discussions that took place March 2-3 at the Rockefeller Institute at the Under 40 Forum, which invited all 40 Under 40 honorees as designated by the two business publications in 2016 to engage in meaningful dialogue to address “Fractured Arkansas.” The topic sought to explore the various divisions – social, economic, cultural, political, etc. – that divide the state and hinder progress, and to offer solutions to those challenges.
A group of the 2017 Under 40 Forum participants met earlier today with Gov. Asa Hutchinson to discuss the report and expand on their findings.
“After my meeting with the Under 40 honorees at the Capitol on Tuesday morning, I am more confident than ever about the future of Arkansas,” Hutchinson said. “This generation of leaders have big ideas and the commitment to service that will help bring the ideas into reality. I applaud them for their hard work and clear thinking.”
One of the key issues identified in the report is a need for alternative approaches to education.
“It’s no surprise that education was a key part of the discussion at the Under 40 Forum,” said Dr. Marta Loyd, executive director of the Rockefeller Institute. “This topic was a highlight of their meeting with the governor. They championed a greater commitment to internships and mentorships for high school students. Building bridges between the business community and our schools was a clear priority.”
Another key theme of the report is leadership in cultural competency.
“The need for better understanding across cultural gaps is pretty clear,” said Skip Rutherford, dean of the Clinton School of Public Service. “It was encouraging to have this impressive group of young leaders, from various cultural backgrounds, all working together and all willing to be honest with the governor about what they think is important.”
One of the recommendations in the report is for cultural competency to become a priority not just in the more populated portions of the state, but also in small towns and in corporate board rooms.
The Under 40 Forum began in 2016 as a partnership between the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute, the Clinton School of Public Service,Arkansas Business and the Northwest Arkansas Business Journal. It was supported this year by Electric Cooperatives of Arkansas, Simmons Bank, the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce and the Clinton School.
About the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute
In 2005, the University of Arkansas System established the Winthrop Rockefeller Institute with a grant from the Winthrop Rockefeller Charitable Trust. By integrating the resources and expertise of the University of Arkansas System with the legacy and ideas of Gov. Winthrop Rockefeller, this educational institute and conference center creates an atmosphere where collaboration and change can thrive.
Program areas include Agriculture, Arts and Humanities, Civic Engagement, Economic Development, and Health. To learn more, call 501-727-5435, visit the website at www.rockefellerinstitute.org, or stay connected through Twitter and Facebook.
First off, congratulations. Your achievement at this University is remarkable and it deserves all of this recognition and more. I’m honored to be speaking with you and I can’t wait to see what amazing things you all do in this world. I imagine some of the smartest ones among you are asking, what could a guy that makes movies possibly have to say to a group so committed to the betterment of the world? It’s a fair question, and one that I’ve been asking myself since Skip invited me to give this speech two months ago. So I tried to think about this program and the work that you all are setting out to do, and I tried to find a way to relate to it. I realized that what you all are setting out to do and what I set out to do in my career, while the goals are different, the inspiration and execution of those goals are pretty similar. We all are passionate about an idea, and we all must strive to service that idea with our work. So I want to talk about passion, I want to talk about the creation of an idea, and I want to talk about the service we give to those ideas. Together, I think these things are the engines that help us affect the world.
The greatest thing about a passionate person is that they don’t need to be told what to do. That doesn’t mean they don’t need advice, guidance or support throughout their life, quite the opposite actually. It means that a passionate person always finds a way, regardless of the path.
Growing up the son of a furniture store owner here in Little Rock in a solid middle class family, I couldn’t have felt or honestly been further away from the Hollywood machine that made the films I watched every week at our local multiplex, but despite this I grew up wanting to make movies. I went away to film school without a clue of what the process of making a film involved, and once I discovered more about that process and graduated from film school, I still had no clear or easy path to actually making my first film. I waited tables at a pizza place while living with my parents, I wrote ad copy for Fudruckers restaurant at a boutique ad agency. I did whatever I could to pay my rent, but had you asked me what I did for a living back then, I’d tell you, “I make movies.”
I was never defined by the jobs I took or the places I found myself along the way. I was defined by my passion for the thing I wanted to do most in my life. My first serious girlfriend once asked me over the phone when we were in college what I was going to do after graduation. I said, “Make a movie.” She wisely asked, “but what if you don’t?” I said, “But I am going to make a movie.” And she asked again, “Yeah, but what if you don’t?” I had no answer for her. She was smart, and she was being practical. But I honestly couldn’t answer her. And that’s what I mean by being a passionate person. You hold a goal in your mind, and no matter where you are in life, everything you do bends you toward that goal. I had no clue how long it would take, or who’s money would be spent to make it happen, but those just seemed like details to me. The greater trajectory was defined by what I was really passionate about.
You may have already encountered a few, “But what if you don’ts?” You may have even encountered a “That’ll never happen.” In a way, those are the easiest ones to respond to. Sometimes, you may never have anyone ask, “But what if you don’t?” That could be because they may not be asking about your project at all. It’s easy for people to go all day without thinking about getting water and sanitation to more parts of Uganda. Nothing in their day may cause them to wonder about the quality of services for seniors from the Arkansas Food Bank. And that is where your passion starts to pay off. As a passionate person, you are always going to be the best advocate for your idea, regardless of resistance or worse indifference. If you’re truly passionate about something, every person you come into contact with will have the opportunity to be affected by your ideas. Your passion for that idea will consume your life, and it will be your greatest tool in realizing your goal.
Now, it’s not always easy being a passionate person. I remember driving around one day behind a garbage truck. I was in the middle of trying to write one of these screenplays, which usually means I was deep in the pits of self-doubt and crippling insecurity. And as I trailed behind this garbage truck, watching these guys grab sacks of yard clippings off the street, I thought, “That must be amazing.” I bet when those guys go home, they don’t think one minute about that sack of garbage. I bet when they get home their minds are free to think about sports or the weather. I’m sure they have their worries. I imagine they’re worried about paying their mortgage, or if the city is going to cut their health benefits next quarter, but whatever they are worried about, I can almost guarantee you it isn’t that sack of garbage. No, when you are passionate about something, it is your work and your life. It shapes you, your family, and everything that comes in contact with you. It has to be that way, and the truth is we don’t have a choice in it. Our passionate ideas choose us, and how we respond to them will define our efficacy in this life.
Now, passion for an idea, passion for an idea. Let’s talk about this supposedly great idea. This is where the rubber starts to meet the road. In my life, I can attest to the fact that it is not always about the quality of your idea, but usually the clarity of it. In most of my films, I’m not reinventing the wheel. I’m actually trying to find universal ideas and tether them to earth through specificity. Unrequited love was the basis for my film MUD. Not exactly treading new ground with that one, but you don’t often see a boat in a tree or a man in a homemade diving helmet crafted out of a hot water heater. It’s those details, that specificity to place, that makes the big, universal idea gain traction in the minds of the audience, and it’s where my ideas begin to find their clarity.
I’m a big believer in clearly enunciating your idea, say it out loud, even if it sounds cheesy. Say it out loud, even if you’re not entirely sure what it is yet. I love to sit people down and tell them about the stories I’m working on. It forces me out of my own head and makes me accountable for the dreams I’m hatching. It also drills down the essence of my idea. It’s shocking how far you can get on something before you really know what it is you’re trying to do. I made a film called MIDNIGHT SPECIAL. Don’t worry if you didn’t see it, the vast majority of people did not see that film. Despite that fact, it’s probably the most personal film I’ve made, because it’s about my son. Now, I could literally tell you every scene in the first 45-minutes of that story long before I ever knew what it was about. I knew it would be a sci-fi, action chase film, but that’s just plot. I knew I wanted it to be about a father and son, but that’s not a full idea. Father and son, what about a father and son? It wasn’t until I witnessed my son having a febrile seizure, and my wife and I feared we might lose him, that I realized what I was doing. I was making a film about a father having to deliver his son to another place. Maybe that’s heaven, maybe it’s college, or in the film’s case a parallel dimension, but at the end of it I knew my idea behind this film was about a father delivering his son to another place. That’s a lot different than just saying I’m making a film about a father and son. What I challenge you all to do, is never stop cultivating your ideas. Work them over, say them out loud. They’ll be better for it.
Okay, so we’ve got a group full of passionate people here with amazing, fully realized ideas. Great. High-fives all around. But this work is serious and a lot of inspiring words aren’t enough. That’s what leads me to the word service. Every film that I’ve made was born out of an idea that was personal to me, and that’s a terrifying thing to share with the world. Once you step out and say, this is how I see things, this is what I think of things, in your case this is how I want to fix things or make things better, when you do that you immediately set yourself up for critique. In fact, in my business, there are people specifically employed to sit back in judgement of my ideas. And that’s okay, that’s how things work, and it can honestly be a galvanizing force, but the worst critique I can get, is one where the viewer failed to see, feel or understand the idea behind my film. That’s my failure. Because everything I do, writing, directing, editing, should be in service of that original idea.
The service of an idea is one of the most crucial things any of us can do with our lives. I’m going to say that again because it’s kind of my point for this whole thing. Your service to an idea is one of the most crucial things you can do with your life.
To make an impact, I believe you have to clearly enunciate what it is you want to say or do and then make every choice and action in that endeavor support it. In a film, every line of dialogue I write, every shot that I frame, every cut that is made, should be in service of the greater idea I’m trying to convey. If it doesn’t do that, it’s not necessary. It needs to be culled.
When I set out to make my most recent film, LOVING, about Richard and Mildred Loving’s battle for the right to be married and live in their home state of Virginia, I was immediately struck by the idea that this was a great American love story. These were two people whose love was so sincere for one another that they were willing to live in hiding under the threat of arrest or much, much worse just to stay together in the place they belonged. To me, it was one of the most beautiful, pure expressions of love I’d ever heard of. Now, Loving V. Virginia also happens to be a landmark supreme court decision that would prove integral to the Civil Rights movement as well as more recent struggles for marriage equality. To grossly understate the matter, it was an important case. But you watch the film we made, and you don’t see any rousing court room scenes. You don’t even see the sweeping effect the decision had on our society. Why not? Because that was not my idea for the film. My idea was about the love between these two people. So rather than court room scenes, all you see are two people, continually reaffirming their love for one another. Every line, scene, and edit was constructed to service that idea. Lots of people disagreed with that approach, but luckily for me lots of people liked it too.
Regardless though, once I had that idea clearly enunciated, every part of the process that followed had to be in service of it. And I look out at you all, and I know you are teeming with ideas to thrust upon this world. Accessibility to housing, school breakfast, women’s empowerment in Dubai, tourism in Albania, improving computer systems in Mozambique. These are worthy, true, good ideas, and it will be on your shoulders to service them with the passion that got you here. I truly believe the service of an idea is what will ultimately allow you to fulfill your passion.
So, in closing, I’m becoming more and more rare in the world of filmmakers because I’ve never made a big superhero movie. I talked about directing Aquaman for a while, but luckily the studio came to their senses and hired someone else. I’m sure it’s going to be great, but the point is I’ve spent some time studying the subject, and I have to say, you all are like superheroes to me. Through your ideas, your passion and your studies, you now have these powers, and today we are watching as you take them out into the world and do great, great things with them. I’m inspired by you, and I look forward to seeing what your passion delivers. Thanks for letting me be a part of this. Good luck.
The Center on Community Philanthropy at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service has received a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to support its work of leading philanthropic and nonprofit infrastructure organizations to advance racial equity and sector effectiveness. The grant’s resources will help expand the reach of the Center within its core areas of research, convening, and leadership development.
“We are excited to deepen our efforts for racial equity and inclusion,” said Dr. Charlotte L. Williams, associate professor and director of the Center on Community Philanthropy. “We are committed to work alongside our partners to improve nonprofit practice within communities and across the sector”
The Center plans to promote community philanthropy by forming new models, innovations, and collaborations that focus on making incremental, measurable, and visible progress for racial equity. Plans include hosting research scholars from around the country to learn from their expertise to develop leadership capacity and best practices within the sector.
“We very much appreciate the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s continued support for our Center on Community Philanthropy,” said Clinton School Dean James L. “Skip” Rutherford III. “Regardless of income, everyone can give in a way that helps transform communities. The work of our Center educates and inspires individuals on how to do that. This grant will enhance that ideal.”
The W.K. Kellogg Foundation (WKKF), founded in 1930 as an independent, private foundation by breakfast cereal pioneer, Will Keith Kellogg, is among the largest philanthropic foundations in the United States. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, WKKF works with communities to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.
The Kellogg Foundation is based in Battle Creek, Michigan, and works throughout the United States and internationally, as well as with sovereign tribes. Special emphasis is paid to priority places where there are high concentrations of poverty and where children face significant barriers to success. WKKF priority places in the U.S. are in Michigan, Mississippi, New Mexico and New Orleans; and internationally, are in Mexico and Haiti. For more information, visit www.wkkf.org.
Launched in 2007, the Clinton School Center on Community Philanthropy was created to focus its teaching, research and policy-making exclusively on the emerging field of community philanthropy, the idea of giving and sharing time, talent, and treasure from within one’s own community.
Retired Judge and Clinton Center volunteer Ellen Brantley was second in the crossword contest. Brantley is a two-time winner and this year marks her fourth time to finish second. Angelo Turturro, who is retired and lives in North Little Rock, was third.
Little Rock ophthalmologist Jim Deer finished second in the Sudoku competition. Robert Crook, senior database administrator with Talisys, a software and solutions firm in Little Rock, was third.
The championships were conducted by Little Rock District Judge Vic Fleming who constructs puzzles for the New York Times and other major publications. Deb Amlen, editor of the Wordplay crossword column in the New York Times, was the featured speaker.
The Clinton School has hosted the competition since its founding in 2007.
Little Rock native, Jeff Nichols, will deliver the commencement address for the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service graduation ceremony on Sunday, May 7 at 2:00 p.m. at the Robinson Center (426 W. Markham) in downtown Little Rock. Nichols is a film writer and director responsible for such films as Mud, Take Shelter, and Midnight Special.
In addition to Nichols, University of Arkansas System President will deliver remarks at the ceremony.
As part of the Clinton School’s commitment to public service, we will collect donations for the UA-Little Rock Trojan Food Pantry. Thousands have accessed this campus food pantry including Clinton School students.
Specific food items are needed. Please consider bringing a can of tuna or a jar of peanut butter with you to the May 7th graduation. Donation boxes for these requested items will be easily accessible.. In addition, tax deductible check contributions can also be made to the UA-Little Rock Trojan Food Pantry and mailed to: Clinton School of Public Service, 1200 President Clinton Avenue, Little Rock, Arkansas 72201 or brought to the graduation.
Hope Rises, a nonprofit in Little Rock, offers a comprehensive program for previously incarcerated women to transform their lives and achieve successful reentry into their community.
The Hope Rises Wellness & Recovery House is a supportive community living environment in which women can recover from trauma and addiction and work daily on their physical, mental, and spiritual health. Our 6-month program includes daily programming in gender-responsive case management, healthy eating and cooking, physical exercise, mental health counseling, community engagement, and job readiness and career development. For more information on our innovative approach, visit www.hoperises.org.
Beginning in October of 2016, photographer and student at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service, Stacy Cox conducted her Master’s thesis research with the residents of the Hope Rises Wellness & Recovery House. Her research focused heavily on capturing images of the daily lives of our participants and recording their journeys in interviews. The resulting photographs are real, raw, and poignant – providing a perspective on the struggles and successes of women in reentry. Visit www.womeninreentry.org for a peek at some of these images as well as video interviews of Stacy, staff, and some of our residents.
Thursday, April 20th, Hope Rises will host a one-night gallery showing of some of these images to raise awareness of the organization, our work, Stacy’s talents, and the incredible strength of the women participating in our program.
For additional information about the event or to become a sponsor, please contact Hope Rises board member, Hallie Shoffner, at 870.217.3332 or email email@example.com.
Thirty-three students in the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service Master of Public Service degree program will conduct international public service projects in 19 different countries this summer.
Students will complete projects related to agriculture, education, economic development, criminal and social justice, and international development, among others, for organizations such as Winrock International, the United States State Department, the South African Education Project, and MassChallenge Israel.
“Having the opportunity to participate in high quality international and related work helps make the Clinton School experience special for our students,” said Clinton School Dean James L. “Skip” Rutherford. “The 2017 projects are exceptional.”
The international service component exposes the students to unique challenges around the globe and provides immediate and long-term impact for the students and their organizational partners.
Work sites and host organizations are selected collaboratively by Clinton School students and faculty.
2017 International Public Service Projects:
Darlynton Adegor – Syrian Emergency Task Force (Little Rock, Arkansas, USA) – Adegor will work with the Syrian Emergency Task Force to create a strategic plan for community engagement and collaborative partnership with stakeholders interested in the alleviation of the suffering of the Syrian people
Rebecca Agyei – Kofa Foundation (Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA) – Agyei will develop and implement an evaluation plan as part of the organization’s monitoring and evaluation program. She will develop a data collection process and create measures to assess the impact of the organization’s program.
Amie Wilcox Alexander – United States Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agriculture Service (Tokyo, Japan) – Alexander will work with the Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS) to study agricultural commodity consumption and demand in Japan. She will research and produce commodity reports for the United States Department of Agriculture detailing market trends and demand in Japan.
Hannah Bahn – Lagim Tehi Tuma (Dalun, Ghana) – Bahn will work with Lagim Tehi Tuma (“Thinking Together” in Dagbani), an undergraduate summer action research fellowship that joins 6 students from Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges, USA, and 3 students from the University for Development Studies with the community of Dalun, in Ghana’s Northern Region. The program combines collaborative study, reflection, and introductory Dagbani language instruction with education-focused internships in an early education NGO, a community radio station, and an internet training centre.
Reggie Ballard – Moroccan Children’s Trust (Taroudant, Morocco) – Ballard will complete a summative outcomes evaluation of the Moroccan Children’s Trust student support program to provide a framework for program success and possible expansion. His work will provide a framework for program success and possible expansion.
Caitlin Campbell – U.S State Department Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (Washington D.C, USA) – Campbell will work in the US State Department’s Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights and Labor which works to spread democracy and respect for human rights around the world. There she will have the opportunity to meet with senior-level US and foreign government officials, draft documents for US foreign policymakers, and engage both domestic and foreign audiences in explaining the work of the US State Department and promoting US foreign policy.
Catherine Campos – Limited Resource Teacher Training (Kanungu, Uganda) – Campos will help create a recruitment strategy for LRTT in order for the organization to better tell its story and reach teachers that would benefit from the program. In order for Campos to this, she will work with the LRTT staff in implementing an impact assessment of the program.
Susanna Creed – Fundacion Arte Del Mundo (Banos de Agua Santa, Ecuador)– Creed will form a curriculum committee that will allow her to engage and collaborate with the people of Banos de Agua Santa, Ecuador to create a tailored, enriching out-of-school curriculum for the children in their community. The curriculum will be implemented and maintained through an improved sustainable volunteer program at Fundacion Arte del Mundo.
Brittney Dennis – Moroccan Children’s Trust (Taroudant, Morocco) – Dennis will conduct a needs assessment for the organization’s Women’s Empowerment program.
Caroline Dunlap – Winrock International (Senegal, Guinea, Nigeria) – Dunlap will develop an internship model for in-country young adults enrolled in agricultural programs in Nigeria, Senegal, and Guinea. Dunlap will develop a framework that will help educational institutions prepare their students to successfully complete internships, and help private sector hosts mentor and prepare them for the workforce.
Zac Hale- Landesa (Seattle, Washington, USA) – Hale will work on Landesa’s Responsible Investments in Property and Land project, developing guidance documents for land-investment stakeholders in Ghana and Tanzania.
Mollie Henegar – Awamaki (Ollantaytambo, Peru) – Henager will be working as the Program Coordinator for Awamaki’s summer Monitoring and Evaluation Program. She will oversee data collection and analysis in order to assess the program impact among the Andean women and business cooperatives that Awamaki serves.
Zackary Blake Huffman – U.S State Department (Yerevan, Armenia) – Huffman will be serving in the Pol/Econ department of the United States Embassy in Yerevan.
Lucy Kagan – U.S State Department of Agriculture, Foreign Agriculture Service (Dubai, United Arab Emirates)- Kagan will collaborate with Foreign Agricultural Service officers in the United States Embassy to conduct research and generate region-specific reports on U.S. Agricultural markets.
Megan Kurten – Limited Resource Teacher Training (Kanungu, Uganda) – LRTT is an organization that establishes a global network of teachers that collaborates on solutions to the unique challenges to education in limited resource contexts. Kurten will work on data analysis, curricula, and teaching models to evaluate the 2016 LRTT programs. This evaluation will be used to help adapt LRTT models for 2017 and 2018 to bring quality teaching to every child, regardless of income or location.
Steven Kwizera – Airforce Secondary School (Entebbe, Uganda) – Kwizera will work with the organization to research reasons why thelteachers and administrators are reluctant to use the computers and printers in the school’s computer lab to more efficiently manage tasks. Kwizera will then create and recommend a framework that encourages the use of basic technology for the teachers and administrators.
Domenick Lasora – Innpactia (Bogota, Colombia) – Lasorsa will research, create, and implement a marketing plan for the expansion of Innpactia’s online users. He will assist the organization in their expansion to Mexico and Peru.
Emily Loker – South African Education Project (Cape Town, South Africa) – Loker will be conducting interviews with high school students, parents, and teachers to further enrich SAEP’s understanding of what factors affect student success.
Chelsea Miller – Arthik Samata Mandal (Andhra Pradesh, India) – Miller will be evaluating gender empowerment programming for ASM that will allow the organization to grow its programming. Additionally, she will develop a guide for engaging US donors to further ASM’s mission.
Anthony Nickerson – Barleti Institute for Research and Development (Tirana, Albania) – Nickerson will assist the Barleti Institute implement program proposals. He will also assist the Barleti Institute in writing reports and grant proposals.
Fiona O’Leary Sloan – MassChallenge Israel (Jerusalem, Israel) – Sloan will work with MassChallenge, a nonprofit startup accelerator, on programming, curriculum, and mentorship for 40+ startups. She will also evaluate the organization’s mentorship program.
Ross Owyoung – Give and Surf (Boca Del Toro, Panama) – Owyoung will develop a curriculum for Isla Bastimentos Community Center to serve as the foundation for the community center’s educational program model. He will research best practices, use participant observation to access the current program curriculum, and collect data from the organization’s other community centers to determine the best-suited curriculum for Isla Bastimentos Community Center.
Elena Aurelia Perry – Vital Voices Global Partnership (Washington D.C, USA) – Perry will pilot an evaluation for the organization, using the photovoice methodology, by employing photography and group dialogue to explore the impact of a program for young women leaders. She will analyze the interactions among participants and create a visual representation of their social network.
Colby Qualls – Albanian Institute of Public Affairs (Tirana, Albania) – Qualls will assist the UNESCO Chair at Martin Barleti University in developing research on multiculturalism, intercultural dialogue, and human rights. He will also assist in a project that is bringing awareness to the use of Information Communication Technologies as a tool within the European classroom for pupils in need of special support.
Vinya Raj – University of Arkansas Pine Bluff (Pine Bluff, Arkansas, USA) – Raj will develop a curriculum for a statistics course for the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff (UAPB), Department of Mathematics and Computer Science. This curriculum will aid UAPB in expanding its initiative in the fields of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM).
Natalie Ramm – Comprehensive Rural Health Project (Maharashtra, India) – Ramm will be updating the educational materials for the Comprehensive Rural Health Project’s Adolescent Girls Program. She will be surveying past and current participants and program instructors to discover what aspects of the program could be improved, and she will conduct best practices research to ensure that the program is teaching participants the most updated information about health, the environment, and social issues.
Paxton Richardson – DREAM project (Cabarete, Dominican Republic) – Richardson will develop curriculum for the organization’s scholarship program to support student success at the local university. She will conduct a needs assessment with current students, professors, and DREAM faculty members, and research evidence-based practices to craft curriculum.
Emily Smith – Limited Resource Teacher Training (Kanungu, Uganda) – Smith will be working to develop culturally appropriate data collection methods to serve the organization’s monitoring and evaluation process. She will also work on developing a plan to measure the long-term impact of the organization and target population.
Joshua Snyder – South African Education Project (Cape Town, South Africa) – Snyder will perform a comparative study on the impacts of for-profit and not-for-profit tutoring organizations in Cape Town, South Africa.
Nick Stevens – Farm to School Arkansas Children’s Research Institute (Fayetteville, Arkansas, USA) – Stevens will conduct formative research for the organization, generating profiles of immigrant populations in Arkansas and identifying barriers and facilitators to their participation in farm to school activities. This research will serve to educate the organization, and thus better enable them to support schools, growers, and communities as they implement farm to school with this target audience.
Emilie Street – Give and Surf (Boca Del Toro, Panama) – Street will assist the organization with program implementation for the opening of their new community center on Cristobal Island. She will be using participant observation, best practices research, and collecting data from the organization’s other community centers to determine the appropriate strategies for implementing a similar model in a new location.
Andrew S. Trevino – African Prisons Project (London, United Kingdom) – Treviño will assist the organization with development strategies for expanding its law college programs inside Ugandan and Kenyan prisons. He will conduct best practice research on the systems around the law colleges, how to deliver the law degree programs more effectively in the prisons, and think about standard processes, time tables, and what risk factors are involved in the program.
Brandon Trevino – Awamaki (Ollantaytambo, Peru) – Treviño will help implement an evaluation plan to serve as the foundation for the organization’s comprehensive monitoring and evaluation program. He will collect data and create measures to assess the impact of Awamaki’s programs on the lives of the rural, indigenous women who participate in them.
Today Amie Alexander was awarded the $12,000 B.A. Rudolph Scholarship for the 2017-2018 school year at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service. Alexander is a graduate of the University of Arkansas with a bachelor of science degree in agriculture, food and life sciences. In addition to working on her master of public service at the Clinton School, she is also pursuing a concurrent degree at the William H. Bowen School of Law.
The B.A. Rudolph Foundation established a $50,000 scholarship fund at the Clinton School in 2015 in honor of the organization’s namesake, B.A. Rudolph, a 1978 graduate of the University of Arkansas. Previous recipients include Jennifer Guzman who graduated in 2016 and Stacy Cox who will graduate in May.
The B.A. Rudolph Foundation is a Washington, D.C. based charitable nonprofit started by women, for women, to honor the founders’ godmother, B.A. Rudolph. The Foundation’s mission is to advance and benefit young women interested in public service through educational, financial, and professional support.
“B.A. began her career in public service at the University of Arkansas and working with Bill and Hillary Clinton,” said Maggie Moore, one of the foundation’s three co-founders. “We’re proud to support her legacy by helping students at the Clinton School receive the educational opportunities they need to make differences in the world.” Moore and Kristen Hecht, program director at the B.A. Rudolph Foundation, presented the award to Amie in person at the University of Arkansas, Little Rock campus earlier today.
“Thank you to the B.A. Rudolph Foundation for this generous support,” said Clinton School Dean Skip Rutherford. “B.A. was a friend of mine and her legacy of leadership and public service continues through the great work of the foundation which bears her name. Amie Alexander, whose professional future is very bright and whose public service commitment is very strong, is most deserving of this prestigious award.”
B.A. Rudolph served on Bill Clinton’s gubernatorial staff as well as his presidential administration as deputy chief of staff to Transportation Secretary Rodney Slater and chief of staff to USAID Administrator Brady Anderson. She died from cancer in 2011.
Yvonne Quek, a graduate student at the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service is organizing Little Rock’s first-ever Human Library event. The event will be held on April 23, 2017 from 1:30 – 4:30pm at the Hillary Rodham Clinton Children’s Library and Learning Center at 4800 W 10th St, Little Rock, AR 72204. The event is co-sponsored by the Central Arkansas Library System and the University of Arkansas Clinton School of Public Service. This interactive event invites both young and old readers to engage in meaningful conversations and hear from diverse perspectives.
The Human Library is an event that originated in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2000, and since then, has been held in over 70 countries worldwide. As the name suggests, it is a library of sorts. However, instead of loaning books and magazines, during the event, real people of all walks of life (and with experiences as diverse as the books in a library) are available to be “loaned out” for real conversation. Examples of “books” may include a refugee, a recovering alcoholic, an individual with depression, someone who’s deaf and blind, a transgender person, a homeless man, someone of the Muslim faith, someone with autism, and among others. People serve as “books” on loan to “readers”, as deep repositories of our culture, biases and stories.
Ronni Abergel, the founder of the Human Library, created this safe space to allow community members to gain insight into the lives of others who may have a different perspective on the world. As Haruki Murakami puts it aptly in his book Norwegian Wood, “If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.”