2021 Arts of Respect Drucker Fellows Program


Drucker Fellows Program Arts of Respect

Arts of Respect 2020-2021 Funding Opportunity

Arts of Respect (AOR) awards projects in the visual, literary, and performing arts. Its focus is respect for humankind and to promote greater understanding of how the arts can help build more cohesive community at Drew University and beyond.

AOR – established in 2009, endowed by a generous gift from Dr. Paul Drucker C’51, P’83, and facilitated by Drew’s Center on Religion, Culture & Conflict – endeavors to end hatred, move beyond mere tolerance, and to instead promote mutual respect.

Meet the 2020-2021 Drucker Fellows

B.S. Biology and Studio Art, Minor in Photography. CLA 2022

"Pandemic Stories from Mumbai"

Over the past year, India, home to over 1 billion people, has suffered two waves of the COVID-19 pandemic and a range of ensuing crises. My home city, Mumbai, often referred to as 'the city of dreams', has turned into a city of nightmares, setting the highest globally recorded single-day rise in cases just a month ago. With these events still ongoing, I hope to learn more about how this pandemic has fundamentally changed the city, and the ways in which people have had to adapt their daily lives.

Through interviews with citizens from diverse backgrounds, I am putting together a documentary to understand how COVID-19 has challenged the residents of Mumbai in different ways, but also helped us to realize those aspects and people of our city that we may have taken for granted. Through these insights into our distinct but interlaced roles in the city, my goal is to promote greater respect and empathy for one another among our broader community, as well as to reveal existing differences of opinions or struggles which made it difficult for Mumbai to unite in overcoming the COVID pandemic sooner. Above all, I wish to convey a sense of togetherness in having survived what has been an unbearably lonely and painful year for so many.

B.A. Theater Arts. Minor in Film, Media & Communication. CLA 2023

"The Way Forward: Drew / San Diego / Capetown"

I was extremely fortunate, this past semester, to have participated in the project: "The Way Forward: Drew/San Diego/Capetown" (a national initiative sponsored by Bringing Theory to Practice (Bt2P) and the Luce Foundation) as a part of my classwork in Theatre in the Community: The Newark Collaboration with Professors Chris Ceraso and Judy Tate. This project was created in lieu of working directly with the High School students from Newark, due to the Pandemic.

The work of this new Community can be viewed by searching on Youtube for "The Way Forward Project Drew University," which I was a part of creating, along with K.J. Herwig, Marley Matthias, Skylar Patricia, Kris Perez, Mikaylah Mitchell, Diamani Reed, and Tydai Singleton. I edited the collaborative videos that will remain a part of this project.

I am looking forward to a continuing collaboration by editing the videos for the Newark students who will be on the Drew Campus this summer.

Theatre 386: Theatre in the Community

The Theatre 386 class at Drew is an exploration of the field of Community-Based Theatre, and at its core is experiential learning where students serve as both theatrical mentors and fellow creators with our community partners.

Our Project was called:  The Way Forward, and was a cross-country and international theatre arts project.  We worked in conjunction with Bringing Theory to Practice, a national consortium of university educators who wish to develop innovative and collaborative responses to the multiple challenges facing our nation of the COVID 19 pandemic, institutional racism, economic inequality, and the changing environment.

B.A. English And Sociology. CLA 2022

The Rodney M. Gilbert Salon, February 6, 2021

The RMG Salon engages and interacts with BIPOC students. Due to the current pandemic and controversial topic of police brutality, it is important to make the voices of BIPOC students heard and allow a space for them to share their views of what legacy means.

The theme of this performative arts salon is legacy. The Merriam Webster dictionary defines “legacy” as: something transmitted by or received from an ancestor or predecessor or from the past. BIPOC students from all disciplines in the Drew community were welcome to explore, through performance, how they are the product of legacy; be it familial or societal. During the show students read original poetry, sang songs, performed excerpts from plays and original dance pieces to explore and celebrate the theme of legacy. The salon was established in memoriam of Drew faculty member and community organizer Rodney M Gilbert to continue his legacy.

B.A. Studio Art, Media & Communications. Minors in Film Studies, Photography, and Art History. CLA 2023.

"Artists on The Black and Jewish Experience"

My project will serve to recontextualize historical Black-Jewish relations through an exploration of contemporary intersections between Black and Jewish experiences. In order to accomplish this, I will be hosting a series of artist talks at Drew that features various interdisciplinary artists engaging in interpretations of Black and Jewish identities.

I hope this series of conversations between artists and the community will play a role in bridging a gap between these two communities while creating understanding of the diverse and complex identity of the Jewish people as communicated through these artists' respective art forms.

Project co-sponsored by Drew Hillel.

B.A. Political Science. Minor in Sociology. CLA 2023.

"Her Brick City Home"

My work is a photo exhibition of women from my hometown of Newark, New Jersey. It will showcase the lives of urban women as a way of debunking stereotypes and empowering the urban youth identity through the lens of feminist urbanism. I want to offer women from my community a platform to share their favorite places while also sharing their story, and to steer away from the patriarchal values that dominate our society.

Meet the 2019 Drucker Fellows

Featured at the Arts of Respect Showcase 2019
Drew University Ehinger Center

BLA, CLA 2020.


A documentary discussing Hollywood's history of misrepresentation and lack of minority representation (specifically Asian Americans.) Through interviewing individuals such as the president of the Asian American Film Lab, Lyla Evans and I hope to understand how Asian Americans are currently redressing racist representations.

Pearl Lee ('18) recommended that I apply for the grant after finishing a documentary about Asian American identity in the United States. She felt that the Art of Respect grant would highlight my passion for understanding and filmmaking. Lyla Evans and I, being Asian American individuals from radically different backgrounds, want to create something that represents the Asian American movement for minority representation.

B.A. Sociology, CLA 2019.

"I am..."

"The importance of story-telling establishes, fosters and creates community. For first generation college students (FGCS), sharing stories is necessary for support. For this year’s Spring Gala, a different method of story-telling will show the audience a story, rather than tell it. The purpose of the “I am…” to display the pride and strength of being a FGCS.

This video addresses the challenges and the strength that students have to overcome various barriers in the educational system. By relaying this message, this gives an emphasis on the pride that first generation college student and helps breaks down negative stereotypes that members inside and outside of the community might perceive FGCS face. A 5-7 minute docu-video (documentary styled-video) that interviews, and follows the day in the life of FGCS at Drew University.

The premier of this video will be at the DrewFIRST Gala, on April 25th -- a celebratory event that congratulates FGCS who will receive a degree 2018-2019. Additionally, the video will be posted to DrewFIRST’s social media and shared on its Drew Webpage. "

What motivated you to want to organize your project? Multiple things, mainly that I wanted to share the story of first generation college students in an accessible way. I hope this will help break down stereotypes about first generation college students and empower others to claim this status!

B.A. in International Relations and Women & Gender Studies. Minor in Latin American Studies. CLA 2020.

"Altar de Día de Muertos."

In Mexico, people build altars for the loved ones that have passed away on the Day of the Dead. The project consists on building a community altar and having it on display along with information about the holiday.

The project is done in conjunction with ARIEL's annual Cena de Día de Muertos, which brings the community together to enjoy Mexican food and a live band of mariachis.

I am from Mexico, and as much as I enjoyed ARIEL's Día de Muertos celebration I thought it was missing an integral part of it since it did not have an altar on display. This was my way of bringing my favorite holiday to Drew.

B.A. Political Science, CLA 2019.

"Rising Voices Poetry Workshop."

A 6-week poetry workshop that extensively focuses on the voices of poets of color.

What motivated you to want to organize your project? A love for poetry and working with students!

B.A. English and History, CLA 2019.

"New Roots."

Photo journalism project documenting everyday lives and experiences of newcomer refugee and immigrant youth to Oakland, California.

I worked with a non-profit in Oakland, California for two years and thought that the stories of the young men and women who were participants of this program should have their stories told and seen in one way or another.

Master of Letters in Literature, CSGS 2020.

"Aretha Was Right."

My work will be an interdisciplinary examination of the role media, fashion and culture play in the respect of women; I will be using visual art, digital media, and written/spoken word to illustrate this.

I am motivated (and appalled) by the consistent erosion of human interaction and civility in general, and that afforded to women more specifically.

B.A., CLA 2022

"The Beautiful Black Bodies of Drew University."

Through the medium of photography and digital imaging, I plan on exploring the theme of self respect in the black community by documenting the key physical elements that shape our self esteem; skin color, hair, clothing and body shape. I plan on photo graphing the parts of the black body that often gets misappropriated and disrespected in hope of inspiring self respect amongst the black community.

Growing up, I’ve personally struggled with being confident about my black culture in predominantly white institutions. My goal is to remind students at Drew to respect the beauty in black bodies. I think it’s important to recognize the beauty in diversity at Drew University.

Bachelor of Arts, CLA 2019.

"The Unapologetically Brown Series at Drew." March 27, 8 pm, Crawford Hall.

My project will bring street artist Johanna Toruño of The Unapologetically Brown Series to Drew. She will give a lecture/workshop on community organizing and healing through artwork. Students will then have the opportunity to put what they've learned into practice by creating their own posters.

I think that a lot of students have amazing ideas and experiences to share, but feel that they don't have the voice or platform to do so. Toruño has made the streets her platform and is not afraid to speak out about things that are important to her and the community, which is something I admire and feel that students should learn how to do. I think art can also feel unaccessible, especially to POC, but Toruño makes everyone feel as if they are an artist with something important to say.

Project co-sponsored by AOR, Everyday Ethics, The Center for Civic Engagement, The Freedom School, University Program Board, Diversity and Inclusion Committee, Drew Residence Hall Association, Ariel.