Ellen Ingwerson 20′ Works on Shared Space Project with ArtWalla in Walla Walla, WA

At this point at my time working on the Shared Space Project with ArtWalla, I’ve become more than a communication bridge between the non-profits and the community, but almost a project manager/facilitator – helping the process move a little smoother, faster, and providing my opinions when necessary.

It sometimes feels as though the project I’ve been working on for the past couple of months has gone nowhere. Mostly because I’ve been working on a bunch of short-term tasks. But we have made a bunch of progress in turn of all those little necessary jobs.

I’m grateful that the project has already started to head in a less logistical route and onto more creative freedom in helping make ourselves known to the community and future donors. I’m putting together a website and email to begin representing ourselves as a proper organization. I’m also beginning to think of our official name and designing a logo. I’m not sure if I’ve gained more insight since the last blog post, but I have continued to see the importance of organization; organization in terms of holding people accountable for certain jobs, organization in terms of governance between all 9 non-profits, and organization of consistent and strategic communication between everyone involved.

One of the most recent events I attended was ArtWalla’s Creative Network event at Foundry Winery in which there was a gallery opening with about 80 community attendees. A presentation on the Shared Space Project was given along with other artist presentation. I made and handed out informational brochures, networked with other local artists who gave their support or wanted insight, and most importantly, was pleasantly surprised by the variety of people that showed up – people that aren’t the usual attendants, which meant we were expanding our name and ideas. I’ve already gotten emails showing interest from community members that attended which is really exciting.

In terms of the project moving forward, we are continuing to seek consulting from N.C.N., applying for grants, reassessing our motives, and reaching out to the community to build a communal foundation and support system. In terms of my personal development, I have become more comfortable in this professional environment and within the convolution of starting a nonprofit that has to balance a lot of factors that are completely up to you to figure out.

Me and my ArtWalla supervisor, Tricia Harding at the Creative Network Event

Our monthly meetings with the 9 partner groups

Experiences like Ellen’s are made possible by the Whitman Internship Grant, which provides funding for students to participate in unpaid internships at both for-profit and non-profit organizations. To learn how you could secure a Whitman Internship Grant or host a Whitman intern at your organization, click here or contact Assistant Director for Internship Programs Victoria Wolff


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