Catalyzing Newport was a collaborative initiative with a Steering Committee of local and statewide humanities organizations facilitated by the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities and supported by the van Beuren Charitable Foundation. The initiative utilized a visiting scholars program that draws on extensive experience, national and international networks, and the creative excellence of established experts (known as “catalysts”) to engage local communities in meaningful exchanges. Over three years (starting in 2014), visiting catalysts traveled to Newport to apply their expertise during five-day residencies—which include Public Programs and intensive work with Local Action Teams—to address local and national challenges related to economic development, digital advancements, cultural entrepreneurship, and diversity and inclusion. Catalyzing Newport offered a new vision for the city’s cultural sector, one that puts renowned historical organizations, leaders, and cultural assets at the forefront of community conversations about Newport’s development and prosperity.
As the Program Assistant, I provide logistic, communications, and network management support. I assisted visiting catalysts with facilitated programs as well as developed additional creative engagement activities for Catalyzing Newport participants. At the close of the initiative, I designed and assisted in the production of comprehensive evaluation using quantitative and qualitative methodologies.
For more information, see http://catalyzingnewport.org/