Passion Project

Park East Artist-In-Residency Phase 1 Internship

Those of us who have augmented our higher education with an internship know the routine: fetch coffee, make copies, run errands, take meeting minutes; all while trying to soak in the inner workings of the corporate landscape. An internship filled with passion and purpose? Those exist? They did for Kat Wentz, as she interned for Phase 1of the Park East Artist-in-Residency project.

Phase 1 Artist-In-Residence Project Management Team, from left to right: Nichole Epps (artist-in-residence), Ace Epps, Kat Wentz (team intern), Karen Starr (team lead)

Through her internship with ArtsNow, Kat served on the project management team for Mural Arts Philadelphia’s Park East Artist-in-Residency project. This important project seeks to engage the residents of the Park East neighborhood to help answer “what is the heart and soul of our neighborhood?” Through creative experiences, conversation, and events in common civic spaces and throughout the park, the Phase 1 project management team was able to gather vital information to assist with Phase 2 of the project: implementing a mural in the Park East neighborhood.

Team walk-through, from left to right: Ace Epps, Nichole Epps (artist-in-residence), Karen Starr (team lead)
Park East Tennis Courts

With such a meaningful and important mission, Kat dove into her internship with passionate dedication and purpose to help toward the project’s goal. Through her internship, Kat was able to engage with the Park East residents through a host of impactful events where she coordinated, planned, set up, and provided on-site assistance: 

  • Fall Wreath Making Contest: Park East residents created their own fall and winter wreaths with guided instruction from Kat and the artist-in-residence
  • We’ve Got Something in Common – Park East Identity Tapestry: Park East residents chose an identifying statement and wrapped around it a color of yarn, forming a tapestry
  •  Holiday Tree Trimming: Holiday celebration where the team created community connection through art, games, music, gifts, and photos with Santa
  • Park East Past, Present and Future Storytelling and Tea Party: Tea party event to engage residents, create dialogue, and learn about the Park East neighborhood and its residents
  • Radio Show: On air radio show highlighted Akron residents who live, work, and play in the Park East neighborhood
  • Elegant Evening: The finale event!  The project celebrated the Park East residents with a special Hollywood-themed celebration which featured walk the red carpet, photoshoot, murder mystery game, film viewing, award and honors ceremony, dinner and dessert.
Holiday Tree Trimming event, Kat engaging with neighborhood resident

Some of Kat’s other accomplishments that helped the team achieve the project’s Phase 1 goals included:

  • Helped with Phase 1 and Phase 2 artist selection
  • Spent time in Park East with team lead and artists to learn more about the neighborhood
  • Met with community members, residents, and leaders involved with the project to learn more about the neighborhood and its community
  • Assisted in coordination, set up, and tear-down for the two-day Mural Arts Philadelphia workshops, where attendees were given an in-depth look at project management and implementation of mural projects
  • Worked with project lead and artists to develop a plan of action for activities to be implemented in the Park East neighborhood
  • Provided recommendations for action plan and events
Mural Arts Philadelphia symposium trolley tour