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A senior capstone course is the culmination of the University Studies Program at Portland State University. The emphasis of a capstone course is to take students out of the classroom and into the field. Students bring previous knowledge and skills to work on a community project. They work together as a team, utilizing resources and collaborating with faculty and community leaders to find solutions for important issues. Our project partner, Multnomah County Cultural Coalition, works to enhance arts education and cultural awareness among youth, makes culture accessible and affordable to Multnomah county residents, supports diverse cultural activities and organizations, and encourages new cultural activities and organizations. This study will support the work of the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition and assist in their further research of informal arts and culture. Studying what informal arts and culture is and how accessible it is to community members is becoming a nationwide phenomenon, with studies carried out in several regions throughout the nation, urban and rural. This study of informal arts and culture is important for Multnomah County and the city of Portland as a whole because it is the first exploratory study of informal arts and culture conducted in the area. This project will be a useful tool for the Multnomah County Cultural Coalition to determine how to make informal arts and culture more accessible to community members.


Senior Capstone Instructor: Meg Merrick

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