Things are AWESOME right now. After scaling back on a few other things, a whole series of awesome energy, love and support from strangers, friends, family and colleagues alike has flown in to my life. For those that have been following my story, here's the latest.
I want to go to Europe to document creative communities, but am low on funding resources. I'm working on some cool websites while running this campaign to fund my project. I also have an AmeriCorps Ed Award as another possible funding source. But I can't use it unless I'm enrolled in school. Why not do a study abroad program at a local college and apply the Ed Award? None existed. So, I created my own class *after* enrolling at Laney College, in Oakland.
In order for it to be approved however, I had to:
- create a self-designed independent study proposal
- find a professor to sign-on to oversee it
- get a signature from the Dean of Instruction to approve it
And I had to do all this *before* applying for a Payment Request from AmeriCorps.
And I just got the Dean's signature today.
YES!!!!!!!!!! This marks the key to unlocking the treasure chest of my Ed Award to further support my trip! All I have to do now is enroll in the class I just made and I'll get the award sent to me! This is like personal entrepreneurship and I'm so excited. AND, there's even a possibility the college could pull me in to assist with workshops on new media/broadcast journalism when I get back via classes that Noemi Zeigler (a.k.a Madeline Minx) teaches...
I totally WORKED my AmeriCorps experience too - 'built capacity of media arts centers', 'led and developed digital storytelling workshops', 'developed social network campaigns for non-profits'....
I feel so awesome right now. And if I'm able to reach my Kickstarter goal by July 4th, that'll be the icing on the cake and I'll be able to:
- travel safely
- travel well
- be well fed
- document cool communities and people (and have cool gear to do it with!)
- have fun WITHOUT HAVING TO WORRY ABOUT MONEY
I also want to give a big shout out to Darlene Cruz
. While not a backer, she's been sooo awesome to getting the 'school' part of this project off the ground. She was so helpful the first time we met, told me which professors to track down and even shared some of her own
aspirations with me (she wants to do volunteer work in the Philippines one day). She's a real connector this one. Did I mention she rocks? She used her sweet talking skills to get buy-in from necessary staff and faculty *and* introduced me to some great folks who further gave good feedback on my project (thanks Marco!) – certainly my hero(es) for the day.
The many times in the past where I've attempted to go to Europe, money and maybe even my own fears have always held me back. It's now looking like I'll have something far more valuable (money not withstanding!) in going out there - the support of people who believe in my project. Thanks folks! All of your pledges mean so much! Even the emails I've been getting from folks around the world have been a great boost...
So hey, don't forget to make a pledge or become a Fan of the We Operate Best Together Facebook Fan Page!