In the Fall of 2016 I was awarded a grant through the Teaching and Learning Center (TLC) at the CUNY Graduate Center. According to TLC, these awards providing recipients with up to $2,500 are intended to “support the planning, execution, and public reflection upon a teaching and learning project that extends beyond an individual assignment, and which will make a broader contribution to conversations about teaching and learning.”
This grant was awarded to me in support of the ‘Walking in My Shoes’ Project. The ‘Walking in My Shoes’ Project is a radical oral history project that aims to collect and deploy narratives of long-time residents to generate community-centered public policy. This project has been developed in the context of and in relation to de Blasio’s affordable housing plan, which at present, entails the rezoning of 15 neighborhoods across the city.
Another important component of this project and more relevant to the TLC grant, is that the ‘Walking in My Shoes’ project will grow from discrete semester-long projects that will be designed for and in part, in collaboration with, my students.
The ‘Walking in My Shoes’ Project is a digital living archive that will document and reflect on contemporary urban issues as they take place in neighborhoods across NYC. The architects of the archive will be myself and my students, who will participate in semester-long, community-based research projects around NYC. Among other things, this project aims to: create avenues for self-directed and peer-directed student learning, re-situate students as knowers and public discussion leaders on topics of interest to them and their communities, and expand student’s knowledge of how digital tools can assist them in their educational, civic and future professional endeavors.