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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University May 29, 2007 | Vol. 36 No. 36
Inaugural Arts Innovation Grants Announced for Homewood

By Heather Egan Stalfort

Johns Hopkins has awarded approximately $25,000 in grants to students and faculty to stimulate new courses in the arts and other arts-related efforts on the Homewood campus, said Winston Tabb, the university's vice provost for the arts.

The Arts Innovation Program is a new initiative offering funding to faculty and staff for courses in the arts, with an emphasis on interdisciplinary and cross-departmental courses. The program also supports the artistic efforts of students, both those currently engaged in arts activities and those wishing to create a new venture. Grants will be awarded twice each academic year: once for the fall semester, and once for the January intersession and the spring semester.

Of the 10 proposals submitted for fall 2007, six received funding.

"We had a strong field of contenders in this inaugural semester, and it is gratifying to know that new opportunities in the arts will be created for Homewood undergraduates as a result of this program," Tabb said.

Benefiting from the funding will be three new fall courses: The History and Science of Musical Instruments, taught by Susan Forscher Weiss of the Peabody Conservatory and James E. West, research professor at the Whiting School of Engineering; Competitive Advantage: Design + Business, a collaboration between the departments of Marketing and Management at the Carey Business School and the departments of Environmental Design and Graphic Design at the Maryland Institute College of Art; and Image and Text, taught by Phyllis Berger of the Homewood Art Workshops and Tristan Davies of the Writing Seminars.

Additionally, three student-proposed arts initiatives will receive support. The five-year-old Hopkins Lion Dance Troupe, headed by rising senior Nicholas Hu, will receive funding to perform in Baltimore City schools; a new dance program proposed by Brittany Sterrett, a member of the class of 2007, and rising sophomore Lauren McGrath will begin this fall; and a new interdivisional and interdisciplinary multimedia arts journal proposed by rising juniors Derek Nnuro and Shawn Fu received support for its first two issues, both due out this fall.

"All of these innovations represent just the sort of creative thinking that's vital in a large institution like Johns Hopkins," Tabb said. "That they emerged from students, faculty and staff rather than being imposed from without shows that they reflect the specific needs of the undergraduate community."


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