What role can the arts play in creating more inclusive learning environments?
Tune in on March 4, 2016, at 3:30pm EST to the CTC Studio, where arts education theory, policy and practice meet through dialogue.
In the Studio:
Circle Up Conference Thread Leaders Nicole Agois Hurel and Aysha Upchurch
NicoleAgois Hurel is Director of COOL Schools at VSA Massachusetts, a program that builds school capacity to support inclusive learning through the arts. Nicole has managed and evaluated COOL partnerships, mentored the COOL teaching artist cohort, developed professional development on inclusive arts learning and supported VSA MA’s development efforts for the past 10 years. She co-authored Engaging Culturally-Diverse Learners Through Comics and Improvisation, in The Contours of Inclusion: Inclusive Arts Teaching and Learning, a case study that highlights ways in which arts-integrated instruction supports the implementation of Universal Design for Learning. This year she was appointed to the Leadership Council for Boston Creates, the cultural planning project for the city of Boston, and has served as National Institute Faculty for VSA. Nicole holds a Master of Education in Arts in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and a Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance from the Boston Conservatory.
Aysha Upchurch is a dancer, choreographer, and educator whose work centers on social justice, community engagement, and artistry development. Prior to relocating to Boston, she was based out of Washington, DC for over ten years, where she founded and directed the dance ensemble, Life, Rhythm, Move Project. Blending her dance training and professional backgrounds in youth advocacy and conflict resolution, she used Hip Hop dance to entertain and educate audiences while empowering youth. Aysha has performed at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts and the White House and was selected as a US State Department Cultural Envoy in Dance in Bolivia and Honduras from 2007-2011. In 2007, she won the Kennedy Center Millennium Stage Local Dance Commissioning Project and created Am I On?, an award-wining evening-length work about the space between youth and adult voices. Aysha has been on faculty at George Mason University and holds an M.A. in International Peace and Conflict Resolution from American University. She recently received her Ed.M from Harvard University and is now the Associate Director of COOL Schools at VSA Massachusetts where she works at the intersection of arts integration, special education, and professional development.
Steve Seidel, Director of the Arts in Education Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education
A Current Student from the Arts in Education Program at the Harvard Graduate School of Education