Sky Davis
Design Advocacy
Assignment1

CONCEPT 1: A Taste of my World: Middle Main Food Fair/Block Party
  • 1) Issues/Assets: The point of this is to engage Vassar’s community and the greater community of Middle Main. So with this note: what is the one thing that brings almost everyone together? The answer to this is simple:food.
  • 2) Audience/Participation: Vassar currently has numerous social activists clubs on campus. These include numerous intercultural clubs, such as BSU, CSA,LAO,and ASU. As a former member of an undergraduate intercultural club, I know that one of the main problems we faced was joining the college community with the greater community at large. For this project to work, communication between Vassar’s student community and Middle Main’s community is necessary.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This event is meant to function as the stepping stone that will lead to Vassar’s numerous club members to become more active in the community.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Resources for this event, if this event were to be co-sponsored with Vassar intercultural clubs, would be provided mostly through Vassar. Other necessary funds could come from nearby restaurants. This event would be the perfect time for self-advertising, so many restaurants would perhaps be willing to help.

CONCEPT 2: A day in the life: a taste of college life

  • 1) Issues/Assets: Education. This project would allow for younger teenagers of Middle Main to spend ‘a day in the life’ of a Vassar college student. The teenager would be allowed to go to college classes etc. This would help foster the idea of higher education in the younger community of Middle Main.
  • 2) Audience/Participation: Once again, this project would need help from members of the student community at Vassar. Student clubs could help advertise the event.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This event is meant to function as a way for teenagers in the community to be reminded how far education can get you.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Resources for this event, if this event were to be co-sponsored with Vassar intercultural clubs, would be provided mostly through Vassar.

CONCEPT 3+4: Community Garden+ Park

  • 1) Issues/Assets: There is no park space.
  • 2) Audience/Participation: This project would need the participation of members of the community. A community garden would give the greater community something they could call their own, and handle with pride. A park would allow for community member to congregate and as they say ‘take a load off’.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: These two ideas would function as a way to beautify Middle Main.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Money, presumably from the city board. Space. Gardening tools.

CONCEPT 5: Community Hall: a safe space
  • 1) Issues/Assets: As of now, there is no community hall where members of Middle Main can go to, while feeling like they are in a safe space, to communicate about their own ideas about their community. This is a major issue. There needs to be a community space.
  • 2) Audience/Participation: This project will need a vast amount of support from the local government office.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This project is meant to allow members of the Middle Main community to reclaim their neighborhood. A community center will strengthen the bonds between both the neighborhood and the city’s government.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Funds are necessary to see this project come to fruition.
CONCEPT 6: Who are we? Mural
  • 1) Issues/Assets: Who is Middle Main? This project would allow for members of the community to share thoughts with other of who they believe themselves to be. What does it mean to be a member of Middle Main?
  • 2) Audience/Participation: Everyone should be allowed to draw and share their thoughts on answering the proposed question.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This project is meant to allow members of the Middle Main community to reclaim their neighborhood.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Funds are necessary for the spray cans and other art materials.
Further Explanation:
There would be a vast blank wall with a small caption to the bottom left of the wall which read: Who are we? In front of this would be spray cans, paint etc. Hopefully, the outcome will be a self-created community mural.


CONCEPT 7: Reggeaton vs Hip-hop: Outside Block Party

  • 1) Issues/Assets: Teenager involvement in community. Sharing of culture through music
  • 2) Audience/Participation: This event is meant for the participation of adolescents from the age of 13-19.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This project is meant to allow members of the Middle Main community to reclaim their neighborhood.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: Limited resources necessary. If a DJ is found in the community, he/she can DJ the event. Speakers are needed. Advertising for the event is necessary.


CONCEPT 8: Design Squad: Middle Main Chapter

  • 1) Issues/Assets: How involved our teenagers in Middle Main Revitalization? This project is meant to get teenagers more involved, and allow their voice to be heard. The idea is to create a self-sustained high school afterschool club made up of Middle Main high school teens. Without a doubt there is untapped creativity resting in the minds of several high schoolers.
  • 2) Audience/Participation: The club would be opened to whoever wishes to join but here would need to be teacher involvement. Perhaps the art teacher could be contacted.
  • 3) Clarifying the Outcome: This project is meant to create a club which will be self-sustained. It is meant in a way, to give voice to a seemingly invisible, yet important, group.
  • 4) Necessary Resources: As of yet, none would be necessary.



Assignment 2

Design Squad: Middle Main Chapter
A. Desirability: Who would want to participate in such a concept?
(context/culture of your target audience) Do you identifying a clear
interest or purpose?
Teenagers at the nearby high school would participate along with a teacher. The purpose of this is to create a group where thoughts could be shared on how students can participate in making Middle Main into a better place through design. This club is meant to follow a Though then Action model. Ideas that are concrete should be followed through.
B. Feasibility: What is technically possible? What resources, skills
and materials are available to you? How can you create simple
prototypes that allow you to explore the concepts given your
constraints regarding time?
This project can be feasible. All that is needed are teenagers willing to participate.
C. Viability: If applicable, what is the economic model? Especially
important if you are creating a project that you expect to have a life
past this semester. What systems can you consider to sustain such a
project?
This project is viable. The idea is that it will eventually become self-sustaining and as teenagers graduate, new students will take their places.



Letter given to parents and students:



Dear parents and students,
As you may know, there is currently a project called Middle Main Revitalization going on in Poughkeepsie. According to its site, “Middle Main Revitalization (MMR) is a new program of Hudson River Housing. The objective of MMR is to advocate for, support, and undertake efforts to improve conditions for residents in the Middle Main neighborhood, in order to create a more attractive, safer, and more inclusive community. MMR is designed to create measurable economic and social investment by property owners, area businesses, landlords, tenants, and the larger community”. This letter is a call for teenagers interested to get involved in the project by joining Design Squad: Poughkeepsie chapter.
In essence, the club— Design Squad: Poughkeepsie— will be a self-sustained afterschool club made up of Poughkeepsie high school teens. Design Squad will consist of a group of highly motivated and mindful young artists. Participants will facilitate collaborative community based projects, create independent projects, and gain critical awareness through the arts. Design Squad is meant to start in the fall semester at Poughkeepsie High.
This project will allow for more teenagers to involved, and allow their voice to be heard about what their ideas of a better Poughkeepsie consists of.
Interested? Join the group: Design Squad: Poughkeepsie, NY @ facebook.com to get the conversations rolling!