Research Overview

Exploring the Role of Sustainability Science Interconnections Among Art, Schools, and Placemaking in Greenville

From May 2020 – May 2021, I will complete undergraduate thesis research at Furman University in the Sustainability Sciences department. I received funding from Furman University as a Summer Research Fellow to conduct the bulk of my research from May 2020 – August 2020. I am partnering with Dr. Geoffrey Habron to create mutually beneficial research centered around sustainability science, focusing on the relationships between art, schools, and placemaking in Greenville. The project analyzes the breadth of, and role for, sustainability in art education in Greenville public schools and the extent to which art education links with the larger Greenville public arts sphere. The arts can be used as an educational tool for sustainability science, implicitly or explicitly, based on materials and the teachers’ missions and messages. This study will look at how youth involvement impacts art in Greenville and how art in Greenville affects community youth involvement inside and outside of schools. It examines the current and potential contributions art can have on promoting municipal sustainability in order to create achievable goals and inspire action within schools and communities to improve the health and education of Greenville.

Because I am majoring in both Studio Art and Sustainability Science, this project will help me mesh the two on top of expanding my experience with data analysis, environmental resources and organizations, and practical applications of sustainability. In the Art department, I have made conceptual work about the environment and how we interact among other humans to help and hurt it, as well as art regarding resilience, decay, and material conservation/natural materials. I want to eventually become an art professor, and this research project will help me further apply sustainability into art and vice versa, which will advance how I teach, express concern for environmental issues, and get myself and students involved in the community in the future.

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