EAST ST LOUIS ACTION RESEARCH PROJECT

[ Update ]

Newsletter

February/March 2002

Contents

ESLARP POSITION ANNOUNCEMENT

Location of Position: The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign's (UIUC) Neighborhood Technical Assistance Center (NTAC) in East St. Louis, IL.

Title: Visiting Non-Profit Coordinator (academic professional)

Duties: Reports to the NTAC Director. Coordinates support services to community-based non-profit organizations participating in the Non-profit Incubator project at NTAC (see http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu). Independently organizes and manages communication and collaboration among these organizations; attends neighborhood and other meetings with non-profit constituents (mostly held in the evenings) on a regular basis; arranges student and other volunteers to work on projects for these organizations; coordinates Outreach Weekend projects with neighborhood organizations and Campus staff. In addition, as with other NTAC staff, responds to on-going requests for technical assistance from partner community organizations where relevant and as indicated by NTAC Director.

See the entire advertisement at: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/job/

SPRING SEMESTER COURSES/STUDIOS

View course descriptions at: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/courses/

DATA COLLECTION OUTREACH WEEKEND

The first outreach weekend this semester was dedicated to data collection for the development of a comprehensive plan for the South End Neighborhood. To initiate a Comprehensive Planning process in the South End Neighborhood, students and local residents conducted a residential door-to-door survey. The primary objective was to build a broad perspective of the resident's viewpoints and activate South End resident's participation in improvements for their neighborhood. 60 households were surveyed. The survey consisted of eighty-eight questions ranging from general opinions to specific information about economic- and area conditions. A Neighborhood Condition Survey was also completed this weekend. The study area consists of about 2200 parcels.

Some of the results are summarized here: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/outreach/0202/

MARCH OUTREACH WEEKEND

The East St. Louis Action Research Project hit the beaten path to East St. Louis once again for an action packed weekend March 8th and 9th, and due to the hard work and dedication of all the students, faculty, and staff the weekend was a complete success. The ESLARP team was comprised of 130 people, including classes and volunteers from the departments of Urban Planning, Architecture, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, and Landscape Architecture. These students put their heads together and pulled off nine projects.

Read more about it at: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/outreach/0203/

NEW ESLARP BROCHURE ONLINE

We have finally created a new brochure. You can view a web version or a printable version at the following location: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/overview/

NEW LEISURE STUDIES TOURISM DEVELOPMENT COURSE

A new class is being offered each spring in Leisure Studies, LEIST 357 "Tourism Development", its goal is to critically examine tourism planning for less developed destinations. The perspective is a local or bottom up approach that places a strong emphasis on student involvement and experiential learning. To that end, the class will participate in an actual tourism planning experience by providing assistance to the Trails and Legacies tourism initiative that will organize and promote African American heritage tourism in a 17 county area of SW Illinois. East St. Louis and the surrounding communities will play a significant role in the larger initiative and the class will be doing field work there for their assigned projects.

UP260 STUDENTS COLLECT ORAL HISTORIES

In the Fall of 2001, students in UP260 participated in a well established community outreach program with the East St. Louis Participatory Action Research Project (ESLARP). In addition to the workweek activities, UP260 students interviewed neighborhood activists from East St. Louis as part of an oral history project. The interviews provide the students with an opportunity to engage in experiential learning about social inequality and to discover what individual people are doing to create positive change in their neighborhoods. The oral history component documents the lives of individuals who have dedicated many years to neighborhood improvement efforts. East St. Louis is known as one of the most economically depressed African American communities in the United States, reinforcing a negative image of African American life in the city. While, many residents in East St. Louis live in poverty conditions, the oral history project provides an alternative picture into the lives of people who have worked towards creating a better community for their families and neighbors. These are the beginning of an oral history that will be a valuable community resource for local residents and UIUC students who want to learn more about East St. Louis, social capital and community change.

Learn more about community activism at: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/durp/UP260-F01/projectindex.html

LIS SUMMER COURSE

Emerging Technologies in Community Information Systems, LIS450ET, looks at current technologies used to build community information systems, reviews emerging technologies, and discusses how emerging technologies might fit into existing community information systems or how they might be used to build new community information systems. One emerging technology will be selected during the semester as a case study of the broader issues related to implementation of an emerging technology within an existing community information system or to create a new community information system. This semester wireless Community Networks will be chosen as the emerging technology. The class will consider wireless options to extend Internet access to East St. Louis Community Technology Centers that currently cannot receive wireless Internet because of line-of-site issues (e.g., tall trees and short buildings), with the goal of implementing alternative wireless solutions for these sites.

NEWS FROM THE WEB

Additional news items have been added to the website. Articles from the St. Louis Post Dispatch Online. Headlines include: -

Links to articles can be found at: http://www.eslarp.uiuc.edu/update/index.htm#fromtheweb


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Last modified: 04 April 2002, Deanna Koenigs
EAST ST LOUIS ACTION RESEARCH PROJECT