Fall 2009 Issue

From the editor:

When we started putting this issue together, we didn’t have a particular theme in mind. Our aim was, as always, to highlight some of the accomplishments and ongoing work of our alumni, faculty, staff and students. However, it wasn’t long before a theme did, in fact, emerge - one that involves the undisputable but often overlooked or underestimated role that art plays in our lives. These are difficult times for many people around the world. The recession has affected many of us both as individuals and as part of a wider community. During a time when many people are having trouble paying their bills or holding on to their homes, it is understandable that services and pursuits deemed “nonessential” would be scaled back or suspended. As photographer Leslie Sternlieb said during an interview for our story on senior Kelsa Bartley and her work at the Tacolcy Center (pg.32), in times like these it’s very difficult to get sponsorship for any program, especially one that “doesn’t put a meal on the table or clothes on someone’s back.” The truth of Sternlieb’s statement makes us incredibly proud of the efforts of individual members of the Barry community, such as Kelsa and Celeste Fraser Delgado, a professor in the School of Adult and Continuing Education (pg. 20). Their creativity and desire to affect change for the better make it possible for young people in Liberty City to build their self-esteem through photography. By “harnessing” the sights, sounds and colors of carnivals around the world, their efforts give at-risk teens the opportunity to expand their world view and learn new ways of interacting with their peers and with adults. As Mary Andrews, executive director of the not-for-profit emergency shelter the Miami Bridge, says, “[artistic and creative pursuits] not only provide breathing space [to at-risk youth] but discovering, fostering talent is the key to unlocking self-esteem, life-altering self-esteem.” We are very proud of the support, both formal and informal, that Barry provides to individuals like Bartley and Fraser Delgado as well as the role it plays in ensuring that the transformative, healing power of art is not lost – even in difficult times like these.

Paige Stein