UMass Creative Economy Initiatives Funds Awarded to Support Lawrence History Center Summer Student Writers Program

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Rogers Family Foundation
June 26, 2015

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact(s): Susan Grabski, Executive Director, Lawrence History Center, 978-686-9230

UMass Creative Economy Initiatives Funds Awarded to Support Lawrence History Center Summer Student Writers Program

Lawrence, MA – The UMass President’s Office has awarded $20,000 in Creative Economy Initiatives Funds to support "Lawrence Student Writing Workshop: Re-Envisioning Lawrence @ the Lawrence History Center." The program represents a new collaboration between the Lawrence History Center and Andover Bread Loaf (an outreach program of Phillips Academy), and UMass Lowell.

Robert L. Caret, UMass president, wrote on May 29, 2015 to grant applicant UMass Lowell history professor and Lawrence History Center board member Robert Forrant:

“As you know, the Creative Economy Initiatives Fund was established on 2007 to support faculty initiatives in the arts, humanities and social sciences that benefit the State’s economy and improves its quality of life. Your project, based in Lawrence at the Lawrence History Center, and representing a collaboration between UMass Lowell, the Lawrence History Center, and Andover Bread Loaf, holds great promise for benefiting your target students in grades 5 – 7 from the Lawrence, MA schools. The project was strongly endorsed by the UMass Lowell campus as being innovative; having high levels of engagement with community partners and situated to have strong community impact. Indeed, your efforts may well provide a model to replicate throughout MA and elsewhere.”

LHC director Susan Grabski is delighted by this new support and the opportunity the program will provide to Lawrence students:

“This grant, along with additional funding from the ECCF Betty Beland Greater Lawrence Summer Fund and the Rogers Family Foundation, will allow us not only to support the three week summer program, but also to carry the experience forward into late fall 2015 and spring 2016. Select students will create content and exhibit panels to be placed in local businesses in Lawrence, take part in community events, and be given a voice at our spring 2016 symposium centered on urban renewal in Lawrence, Massachusetts and other mid-size industrial cities.”

Lane Glenn, president of Northern Essex Community College and chairman of the newly formed Lawrence Partnership said this about the program:

Community First and Everything Else Will Follow: Honoring Lou Bernieri and Rich Gorham with the 2015 Eartha Dengler History Award

On Thursday, June 18, 2015, over 150 people gathered to celebrate Lou Bernieri and Rich Gorham for over 30 years of work in Lawrence with teachers and students as they received the 2015 Earth Dengler History Award:

"Lou Bernieri and Rich Gorham have brought together their shared roots in both Phillips Academy and the city of Lawrence to develop a remarkable writing program for teachers that inspires young people to discover and draw on their own strengths. Working with teachers who are trained in both youth development and the teaching of writing, young students find their own voices, and tell their own stories. They take back the narratives of their lives and their community, and come to appreciate, perhaps for the first time, the unique value they bring to the communities they live in.

The Andover Bread Loaf (ABL) program, as it is formally known, is based at Phillips Academy and anchored in the immigrant city of Lawrence. Initially shaped by the challenges and the hopes of the city, through the guidance of Lou and Rich’s shared vision and passion, ABL has now grown to communities worldwide. Dozens of young writers are gathering weekly at El Taller / The Workshop in downtown Lawrence to share their work and their hopes. In Lawrence and beyond, hundreds of program “graduates” are helping to rebuild and transform their communities through their unlocked skills, their leadership, and their empowered understanding of who they are."

The Evening Program (download in PDF) included:

Arrival and Cocktail Hour
Music by The Wobbly Boys

Welcome

Mayor Daniel Rivera, City of Lawrence (including presentation of a proclamation for each of our honorees)
Susan Grabski, Executive Director, Lawrence History Center
Armand Hyatt, General Counsel, Lawrence CommunityWorks/Union Crossing

Speakers

Michael Fiato, Headmaster, Lawrence High School
Fernando R. Alonso, Director of Outreach and Summer Session, Phillips Academy
Dixie Goswami, Bread Loaf Teacher Network, Middlebury College

Performances

Nate Baez, Dariana Guerrero, Keyla Rodriguez, Edwin Santana

Award Presentation

Maria De La Cruz, Constituent Aide to Senator L'Italien (presenting citation from Senator L'Italien)
Susan Grabski (presenting a citation from U.S. Senator Niki Tsongas)
Mary Guerrero and Adele Carter, Board of Directors, Lawrence History Center

With profound gratitude to honorees Lou Bernieri and Rich Gorham, our host committee, sponsors, friends, and many others whose contributions have made the 2015 Eartha Dengler History Award Ceremony possible…Click here for a List of EVENT SPONSORS!

Thanks to Sondra Longo and Amita Kiley we were able to capture the evening in pictures. We invite you to enjoy the album on our Facebook page below! Congratulations to our Honorees Lou Bernieri and Rich Gorham!!

Honoring Lou Bernieri and Rich GorhamJune 18, 2015Union Crossing, 50 Island Street, Lawrence, MA(photo credits: Sondra Longo and Amita Kiley)

Posted by Lawrence History Center on Monday, June 22, 2015

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Tue–Fri: 9am-4pm
Sat: By appt
Sun-Mon: Closed

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6 Essex Street
Lawrence, MA 01840
978-686-9230

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Mission

Founded in 1978 as the Immigrant City Archives, the mission of the Lawrence History Center is to collect, preserve, share, and animate the history and heritage of Lawrence and its people.