Edie Meidav, assistant professor of English, has been awarded $25,000 from President Marty Meehan’s Creative Economy Initiatives Fund to help pregnant and parenting teens in Holyoke gain job skills and a sense of self-worth and self-determination.
Through UMass MFA Story Hour, Meidav and graduate students will work with the Holyoke Care Center, a well-supported community resource assisting pregnant Holyoke teenagers who might otherwise drop out of school, and with New England Public Radio studios in Springfield. Through the alliances, at-risk, primarily Puerto Rican, pregnant and parenting teens will learn journalistic and narrative skills and radio production.
The grant is one of 10 totaling $256,000 for faculty projects spanning the arts, humanities and social sciences that were announced May 18 by Meehan.
“With these grants, we are strengthening community ties and investing in the artistic and cultural heritage of the Commonwealth,” Meehan said. “These innovative faculty projects will benefit the state’s economy and enrich our quality of life.”
The Creative Economy Initiatives Fund was launched in 2007 to complement the Science & Technology Initiatives Fund, established in 2004. From its inception, the Creative Economy Fund has embraced a broad mission to increase the cultural resources of the Commonwealth, thereby making Massachusetts a more attractive place in which to live, work, raise families and invest.
Since 2007, the fund has awarded more than $3 million in grants.