The College of Education, Criminal Justice, and Human Services (CECH) hosted a Community Canvas event on Thursday, September 8, to display the hard work of 110 Cincinnati Public Schools (CPS) students, 55 teachers, and the Deputy Superintendent of the district. From May 31st - June 2nd, this group came together to learn about new leadership skills and competencies, empowerment, and to brainstorm ways to positively change their schools and communities.
A partnership between CPS, CECH, StrivePartnership, KnowledgeWorks, the Mayerson Foundation, and Magnified Giving, the Peer Leadership Summit has been a great success to date, instilling a new sense of leadership in its youth participation. Marina Hopkins of StrivePartnership describes the summit as “exciting! It’s wonderful to see students determining for themselves what a leader is, and seeing these cross-school relationships coming together to create positive change in our community.”
The event, Community Canvas, included installations of chain-link fences with interwoven art depicting how these students have come to define leadership. The art, designed by graphic facilitator Mike Fleisch with the support of Happens, Inc., in Northside, visually displayed the effectiveness of the summit. “The installation demonstrates the power of giving voice to these students,” remarks Laura Mitchell, Deputy Superintendent of CPS. “They can now be advocates for themselves and their communities, and lead successful campaigns to make positive change.”