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On May 1, students in Professor Barbara Brown-Wilson's Ecological Democracy course at the University of Virginia School of Architecture gave their final presentations for their Cultivating Connections project, through which they explored how to connect the Kenilworth Park & Aquatic Gardens—a National Park—to the surrounding Kenilworth-Parkside community. Students presented via video conference to a group which included representatives of Friends of Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens, the National Park Service, and the DC Office of Planning. The presentations wrapped up a semester-long project for the students, who received guidance and mentorship in public interest design and community engagement practices from [bc]'s Washington, DC team.
Over the course of the semester, activities that informed their project included visits to the park and design activities with visitors. As part of NatureFest—a weeklong camp at Kenilworth Aquatic Gardens—UVA students asked young participants to draw maps of how they get to the park and representations of plants and animals they've encountered there, learning about where campers come from and how they interact with the park.
Check out images from the final presentation day below!
This project is supported in part by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. To find out more about how National Endowment for the Arts grants impact individuals and communities, visit www.arts.gov.