IU center wins award for Huntingburg initiative

From Local Sources

BLOOMINGTON —The Indiana University Center for Rural Engagement received the Award of Excellence in the category of Place from the University Economic Development Association during its annual summit in Nevada this month. This is the first year IU Bloomington has won the award.

Recognized for outstanding work in quality-of-place initiatives, the Center for Rural Engagement is developing a model for arts-based community and economic development that pairs university resources with rural communities’ local assets to co-create arts- and culture-building initiatives. The center, the IU Bloomington Arts and Humanities Council and community partners in Huntingburg; Nashville, Indiana; and Salem launched a pop-up cinema series, creative writing workshops and readings, theater performances and talk-backs, artists-in-residence visits, professional development for educators, and music masterclasses and performances in local schools and community venues.

“We are thankful for this recognition of the center’s emerging model for arts and cultural engagement, which generates community self-reflection and authentic creative placemaking,” said Kerry Thomson, the center’s executive director. “This acknowledges the hard work of our campus and community partners to build creative capacity in communities and establish a framework for robust arts and cultural engagement in rural communities across the nation.”

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