Arts + Impact Series

The Arts + Impact Series aims to deepen student understanding of the arts’ long-term social impact. This series celebrates the arts as tools and pathways to strengthen community cohesion, inspire civic dialogue, increase political activation, amplify social justice initiatives, celebrate cultural heritage, support equity and inclusion, promote health and wellbeing of communities, cultivate environmental awareness, focus on workforce development, strengthen infrastructure of agricultural and food production efforts and develop community. Through this series, the university aims to build transformative community relationships, deepen existing relationships and promote healing both on our campus and in the WNC community. This series will be centered on student engagement, learning and leadership, asset based community engagement and racial equity. Students will engage in dialogue and arts movements locally, nationally and internationally. 

The Arts + Impact series draws inspiration from the Americans for the Arts, Arts + Social Impact Explorer:

  • The Purpose of the Arts + Social Impact Explorer: To help people begin the journey of discovery to deeper understanding of the arts’ long-term social impact, Americans for the Arts has produced the Arts + Social Impact Explorer, an online primer that draws together top-line research, example projects, core research papers, and service/partner organizations about 26 different sectors, all in an effort to make more visible the incredible, wide-reaching impact of the arts. Created with support from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, this highly interactive, visual tool is meant to drive conversation, and is accompanied by customized Fact Sheets that are downloadable and printable for sharing with board members, public and private sector policymakers, and more. It also is mobile-friendly, and allows for easy conversations with decision makers to help expand the dialogue about the arts and their value to communities. Functioning as the surface of a deep “lake” of knowledge, all impact points and research within the Explorer comes with citations and links so that people can visit the websites of all the example projects, click directly to the research referenced, and engage directly with the other partners doing this work around the country.