Alloyah Abobi, Lidia Garcia, and Marianela Luna-Torrado, BMC ’24

Advancing Racial Justice (Praxis II)

Transformative Justice Through Youth Empowerment

Semester: Fall 2022

Course Instructor: Darlyne Bailey

Field Site: Neighbors Helping Neighbors

Field Supervisor: Bree Davison

Praxis Poster:



Further Context and Reflection (Marianela Luna-Torrado):


Further Context and Reflection (Lidia Garcia):

This is the first class in my two years at Bryn Mawr College that made me feel welcome on the very first day even before stepping into the class. I felt a sense of curiosity when I read the course description because it was nothing like any other class. The readings and the conversations that we had in this course helped me navigate my fieldwork at Neighbors Helping
Neighbors and my classes at Bryn Mawr College. I learned about the importance of establishing a space where people can open up and be curious in order to ensure that they feel welcomed. The working environment Neighbors Helping Neighbors community in the Main Line was
welcoming and supportive, and I was able to learn how to compile relevant research for the organization. I feel motivated and inspired to continue working with my community.


Further Context and Reflection (Alloyah Abobi):

My name is Alloyah Abobi, I am a currently a second semester junior pursuing an independent major in Health, Culture, and Society. My goals in taking the praxis course titled “Advancing Racial Justice” was to have a guide that highlights how to effectively contribute to modes of
advocacy and change. Considering that my major encompasses elements of health studies, cross culture analysis, and sociology, I was grateful to have experience in and outside of the classroom, which ultimately further contributed to my interest and provoked immense growth.

Fiyona Berhe (BMC ’23), Alana Burgess (BMC ’24) and Luke Flannery (HC ’26)

Advancing Racial Justice (Praxis II)

Praxis Fieldwork with the Korean American Association of Greater Philadelphia

Semester: Fall 2022

Course Instructor: Darlyne Bailey

Field Site: Korean American Association of Greater Philadelphia (KAAGP)

Field Supervisor: Denise Hellenbrand

Praxis Poster:



Further Context:

We were partnered with the Korean American Association of Greater Philadelphia. Essentially the KAAGP is an organization that reaches out to communities of Asian American people in and around Philadelphia. They take part in political advocacy and outreach initiatives with various
groups in Philly, and are now, with our help, working on social media to spread information on Asian American history in Philadelphia. We are also working with Make Us Visible PA through our field supervisor Denise Hellenbrand to advocate for the passing of PA House Bill 1917. This
is a bill that would amend the public school code to explicitly involve Asian-American history. Despite having the same overall goals our roles were extremely different. As a brief note for clarity for the rest of our presentation- AAPI is an acronym for Asian American and Pacific

Make us visible PA has allowed me to gain knowledge on a part of history that has been left out in the K-12 curriculum. Working with our Field Supervisor has created a humbling experience. I have learned to advocate for inclusion and diversity in different forms throughout the semester.

I’ve learned about the work that it takes to pass a bill at the state level; in this instance, a large grassroots organization bringing information and advocacy to representatives, and then continuing to work with the government. Currently Make Us Visible is trying to get enough
support to bring the bill to the floor. My part in this is gathering information about the representatives and the counties they work in. I’ve learned about how Pennsylvania is a bipartisan state and that we need both sides to pass this bill, and about how advocacy for all people helps everyone.

My job at the KAAGP was primarily in social media. I was responsible for making posts that the KAAGP and Make Us Visible could use to spread information on AAPI history in Philadelphia. Essentially I was to find small pockets of local history and report them in Instagram-friendly
infographics. I found in my work how far AAPI history went back in Philadelphia- and even the United States as a whole. I didn’t have any context on this demographic with schools acting like Asian immigration is an entirely modern phenomenon. I had no idea there were a deal of Asian
Americans who fought in the Civil War, nor that there were teams of Filipino doctors who returned to the United States to fight the Influenza Pandemic in 1918. I feel much more compelled to do my own learning on American history, rather than the white centered curriculums I’ve dealt with my whole life. And yes, I was not particularly competent in graphic
design at the beginning of this project. But I learned the nuances of a few programs and I’m proud of the work I created. My greatest takeaway, however, was learning to be more critical of my own education. Not everything I learned in high school and middle school should be taken at
face value, as our history classes have curriculums affected by political motives just as much as intellectual.

Jasmin Diaz Tello (BMC ’23) and Palmer Jones (BMC ’24)

Advancing Racial Justice (Praxis II)

Diverting Young People’s Cases from the Courts to a Restorative Justice Process

Semester: Fall 2022

Course Instructor: Darlyne Bailey

Field Site: Youth Art and Self-Empowerment Project (YASP)

Field Supervisor: Felix Rosado

Praxis Poster:

YASP Healing_Poster Final


Further Context and Reflections (Jasmin Diaz Tello):

Being a part of the Youth Art Self-Empowerment Project (YASP) has made my passion clear. People are my passion. I love to work with people and form genuine connections, trust, and relationships. YASP is all about their relationships with people and other communities. Under YASP and the Philadelphia District Attorney’s office with the help from Impact Justice, the program that another student and I got to work with – Healing Futures – was created. We focus on the diversion of incarceration of youth through restorative justice and real healing. We have weekly workshops until the last one where we focus on the responsible youth writing a reflective and powerful apology letter to the person harmed. The responsible youth then share this apology letter at a Restorative Community Conference (RCC) at the end of the workshops. The RCC holds a space for healing, learning, and reflection. The community members, person harmed, responsible youth, and their supports are all invited to attend the RCC and express how the incident affected them each. The community members then create a restorative plan for the responsible youth that is attainable, has an end date, and relates to their case in some way. The other Bryn Mawr student and I are currently community members for one of the responsible youth and with the help of the Associate Dean for Student Support and Belonging, Leslie Castrejon, we have been hosting them on campus for some workshops. I spent my time at Healing Futures actively participating in team meetings, taking notes, facilitating workshops, and learning as much as I could about the program and the incarceration system as possible.

I am going to continue my work at Healing Futures next semester in an independent Praxis course where I will become more involved in the process and community outreach. This organization does such incredible work and has taught me about the power of knowledge, community, self, and apology and that just because someone makes one mistake, it does not mean that they are a terrible person and should face the consequences of it for the rest of their lives.


Further Context and Reflections (Palmer Jones):

I had the opportunity to intern for Healing Futures under The Youth Art and Self Empowerment Project, or YASP, this semester. I was placed with this organization through the Advancing Racial Justice course which was created after the on-campus strike with the goal of increasing awareness and action around transformative justice. I have been able to apply the things I learned
in class to support my work at YASP.

Along with another student, I came into the office three times a week to be hands-on with the program. We receive cases from the District Attorney’s office and allow for an alternative course of accountability. With weekly workshops and the creation of an apology letter, we hope that the responsible youth will have the opportunity for a second chance. At the end of the workshops, the responsible youth, person harmed, and their supporters come together with members from the community to create a space for healing and growth in what is called a Restorative Community Conference, or RCC. By the end of the RCC, the responsible youth has a restorative plan put in place to make things more right. Members from their community come to the conference ready and eager to provide something for this plan that is tangible and has a completion date, unlike the current criminal justice system. I had the opportunity to act as a community member in one of our RCC’s and it has provided me with skills and knowledge on what transformative justice really is. I have been co-facilitating workshops, attending team meetings, as well as observing and participating in all facets of the program possible.

I have been so inspired by this work, that I have decided to create an independent study so as to continue interning for Healing Futures at YASP.

Kelaiah Thomas and Orion Klassen, BMC ’25

Advancing Racial Justice (Praxis II)

Fieldwork With the Youth Art and Self-Empowerment Project

Semester: Fall 2022

Course Instructor: Darlyne Bailey

Field Site: Youth Art and Self-Empowerment Project (YASP)

Field Supervisor: Gabby Jackson

Praxis Poster:

YASP Hub_Poster_Final


Further Context and Reflections (Orion Klassen):

This semester, I worked with my classmate Kelaiah on the Youth Art and
Self-Empowerment Project. This Philadelphia-based community organization is dedicated to ending youth incarceration and the trial of minors as adults. It dreams of major prison reform and its practices are based on transformative and restorative justice, as opposed to the standard incarceration punishments.

The part of YASP that I mainly worked with was the Youth Hub Fellowship
program. The Hub Fellowship consists of workshops to improve lifelong skills among the fellows in the form of weekly meetings, usually on Thursday afternoons. Examples of skills learned and practiced in these workshops are Active listening, Crisis De-escalation, and Mindfulness. The Hub Fellowship is paid and is 6 to 12 months in length. All participants of the Hub have been impacted directly by the carceral system. The Hub Fellows also facilitate the Participatory Defense Hub, with guidance from full-time staff, and this helps them use some of these skills in real-time. The Hub promotes healing and resiliency and creates a confidential
space for participants to grow and learn.

One of the readings we found that really impacted our work was “Racism in the United States” by Miller and Garren. Different organizations can be discriminatory, non-discriminatory, and antiracist. YASP is an antiracist organization which is evident from their lack of a strict hierarchal structure, inclusiveness of every member, openness to differences, active effort in criminal justice reformation, and close proximity to the community with which they are working.

Some of the things I learned while I was working with YASP are to let go of what you think you know. “What’s said here stays here, what’s learned here leaves here” was a phrase that we opened many of our meetings with and I think it’s a great way to recognize how everything can and should be a learning opportunity. And finally, flexibility, adaptability, and open-mindedness are essential for doing work like this. Things might not always go as planned and sometimes things have to change, so you have to be ready to go with the flow when things aren’t exactly what you expect them to be.

Thank you to Dr. Bailey, Sarah, Gwenn, Lisa, and Gabby Jackson for all of your work and guidance during the duration of this course.


Further Context and Reflections (Kelaiah Thomas):

Hello! My name is Kelaiah Thomas and I am a sophomore at Haverford College. I plan on declaring my major next semester in Religion but I am undecided about a minor. I initially decided to take a Praxis course in order to gain familiarity with the surrounding area, particularly Philadelphia, and push myself out of my comfort zone to achieve personal growth. I chose the Advancing Racial Justice course because I want to be able to recognize any occurrences of racial injustice done unto me or another person and gain the skills needed to educate the offending person/people with the goal of keeping it from happening again. I also want to apply what I learned in class to real-world situations. Becoming knowledgeable of how racism impacts every aspect of life including from the smallest of communities to the biggest of institutions is the first step in working towards undoing the harmful work that has been and continues to be done.

This semester, I have had the opportunity to work with the organization, Youth Art and Self-Empowerment Project (YASP). YASP’s mission is to end the trying and incarceration of youth through work in the criminal justice system, community building, and support. They embody the phrase “power in numbers” as their emphasis on community allows for a strong foundation in which trust and dependency are present among the staff, youth, and families that are involved with this organization. My partner and I, Orion Klassen, were involved with one project of YASP, called the Hub. This involved going to the Participatory Defense Hub each week to go over youth cases and provide support in various ways. Throughout the course, I’ve experienced taking on a role for the Hub, writing a letter of support for one of the youth, attending a staff meeting, and attending a prep meeting for the Hub Fellowship. I’ve read and watched many materials relating to the Hub and gained insight into the structure of YASP including the reasoning behind some of the aspects that they have and the values that they emphasize.

Overall, my time at YASP has been quite an experience. The staff and youth that I met were all so welcoming and I could easily see the trust and respect that everyone has for each other. I’m left with a highly appreciative feeling for being allowed to be part of an organization that is doing such important work but I’m also left with a sense of wishing that I could have done more. One semester isn’t nearly long enough to encompass the full scope of what YASP does but I’m so grateful to have been able to help in any way. I can confidently say that I have grown in ways that I didn’t expect to. Becoming closely acquainted with being uncomfortable and encountering situations in which communication and help were needed has taught me to reflect on both my actions and reactions. I am now more confident that I can react logically to uncomfortable circumstances, initiate communication, and request help when required.

Special thanks are given to the YASP community, particularly my field supervisor, Gabby Jackson, the Advancing Racial Justice team including Darlyne Bailey, Lisa Armstrong, Gwenn Prinbeck, and Sarah Spath, and the rest of the course participants for being part of my growth this semester, I appreciate all the help and knowledge I have received these past months.

Frances Millar, BMC ’23

Applied Museum Practices – The Fabric Workshop and Museum

Semester: Fall 2022

Faculty Advisor: John Muse

Field Site: The Fabric Workshop and Museum (FWM)

Field Supervisor: Christina Roberts

Praxis Poster:

Frances Millar_Poster_Final


Further Context:

In my undergraduate studies at Bryn Mawr, majoring in History of Art, I’ve been lucky to explore a variety of art historical coursework and topics. Through these classes, and previous internship experiences in my hometown, I’d garnered a personal and academic interest in museum work
and contemporary textiles, a combination which made the potential of a Praxis Independent Study internship at The Fabric Workshop and Museum quite enticing.

I was thrilled to participate in Praxis IS this semester, and to work in my placement at the FWM. In my previous internship experience as an archival-curatorial intern at a small textile education center, I worked independently researching and photographing a 1960s collection of weaving samples produced by an all-female weaving guild. I enjoyed this work immensely, but found myself looking for more opportunities for professional development. In particular, I wanted to experience working in a larger institution with a larger staff of museum professionals, and with
contemporary artworks. Because Covid disrupted much of my college career I also have come to really value hands-on experiences both inside and outside the classroom, and was looking to work in a setting that would provide experiential learning. Philadelphia has a wealth of arts
institutions, but The Fabric Workshop and Museum in particular was incredibly aligned with my interests, and I’m immensely grateful for my placement there.

My work in the Education Department of the Fabric Workshop and Museum has been quite generative. Through the beginning of the semester, I worked on programming efforts relating to the opening of Dream House, an exhibition by artist-in-residence Rose B Simpson. Dream House is an introspective multi-room installation drawing from the pueblo architecture of Simpson’s ancestral landscape and her personal experiences as an artist, mother, and Indigenous person. Multiple events were planned in collaboration with this show’s opening, and I was responsible for creating an inventory of contacts for targeted outreach, used to promote these events. I compiled over one hundred twenty contacts, and created promotional text with my supervisor Christina Roberts. The primary event that I promoted, a natural dye and tea workshop which was hosted inside the Dream House installation, was well attended and will be having a second iteration in the new year. My work in the later half of the semester has been
similar, but has focused on promoting attendance at an upcoming fundraiser, the closing ceremony of the fall apprenticeship program. For this event I reached out to former apprentices, from contacts in the FWM archive, promoting the event and sponsorship opportunities.

My work promoting the Education department’s programming and events has been interspersed with work in the studio onsite. I’ve helped to hand sew a felt rug in the Dream House installation, sewn aprons, made paper pulp, clay-coated a wall in the first floor Process Lab, exposed and corrected silkscreens for printing, created sample swatch books, dyed silk, and many other studio tasks. This has been such a treat, and has greatly enhanced my knowledge of the FWM as a creative institution.

Throughout the semester I’ve been supplementing my onsite work with academic readings on museum practices and theory. I’ve been primarily focused on Glenn Adamson’s Thinking Through Craft, John Falk’s Identity and The Museum Visitor Experience, and Nina Simon’s blog the Museum 2.0. These readings have provoked new lines of thinking related to the operation of contemporary museums. I’ve maintained a journal documenting my reactions to these texts, as well as the events of my work onsite at the FWM. I’ve discussed these readings and my work with my faculty advisor, professor of visual studies, John Muse, throughout the semester. His insight has been so helpful to my understanding of exhibition and museum practices. I am thrilled to have worked alongside both him and my field site supervisor Christina Roberts

Sophie Greer, BMC ’23

Advocating for Neurodiversity

Semester: Fall 2022

Faculty Advisor: Adam Williamson

Field Site: Facilitate Joy!

Field Supervisor: Cady Stanton

Praxis Poster:

Sophie Greer_Poster_Final


Further Context:

My Praxis course this past fall involved a remote internship at Facilitate Joy! (Reno, NV). Facilitate Joy! advocates for neurodivergent (ND)* people and provides a space for ND people to connect and build community. Facilitate Joy! also provides autism and ADHD coaching.

My responsibilities included researching ND conditions and related traits, raising awareness about neurodiversity by educating the public, and collecting resources for ND people and those who love them. To raise awareness, I developed many presentations about various aspects of the
neurodivergent experience, including alexithymia** and interoceptive dysfunction***.  I also developed and gave a presentation on “Less Well-Known Neurodivergent Conditions”, covering face blindness (prosopagnosia), motion blindness (akinetopsia), dyscalculia (a math learning disability), synesthesia (overlapping senses), and aphantasia (“image-free thinking”).

Through this Praxis course, I improved some soft skills as well as learned about many disabilities and neurological symptoms and associated interventions. I learned how to communicate complex, nuanced medical topics to lay audiences in a way that is accessible and educational and
how to convey information to people in different ways (i.e., verbally, via text, videos, and graphics). I learned about the tips & tricks that some ND people use to manage their conditions & quirks, as well as about ND resources.

*Neurodiversity = the range of ways to think, act, learn, and communicate; a form of biological diversity; the diversity of brains and minds

*Neurodivergent (ND) = someone whose neurological functioning differs from what is considered “typical”. Different cultures and people have different definitions of the word “typical” so different people may be considered ND in different circumstances. ND people often have neurodevelopmental, learning, emotional, and cognitive disorders, such as autism, ADHD, anxiety, dyspraxia, Tourette’s, or dysgraphia.

**Alexithymia refers to the inability to recognize, name, and describe one’s emotions, and may involve trouble with others’ emotions too.

***Interoceptive dysfunction involves an altered sense of interoception, which is your ability to notice your body’s signals (e.g., your heartbeat, sense of pain, hunger) and respond appropriately. Interoception is not as well-known as the classic “5 senses”, but it is a sense all the same

Kate Southerland, BMC ’23

Equitable Development

Semester: Fall 2022

Faculty Advisor: Gary McDonogh

Field Site: Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations (PACDC)

Field Supervisor: Andy Toy

Praxis Poster:

Kate Southerland_Poster_Final


Further Context:

Hello! My name is Kate Southerland and my Praxis Study is named Equitable Development. Specifically for the Praxis Program, I had to create a Learning Plan that incorporated written reflections, readings, and meetings with my faculty advisor (Gary McDonogh) as well as my fieldwork component. While developing my learning plan, I listed out three main goals for myself that would benefit me in my future career: understand particular policies regarding equitable planning/development, enhance my communication skills, and improve my digital competencies.

Before I started my fieldwork, I completed some preliminary readings (ranging from academic research to New Yorker online posts) that helped me prepare and see what to expect before starting my fieldwork. My field site is PACDC (Philadelphia Association of Community Development Corporations). Just to clarify, a CDC is a community-based nonprofit that aims to revitalize, preserve, and overall improve the area it serves; however, not all CDCs look and act the same.

During my fieldwork experience, I have participated in many programs and initiatives including research for the Equity Development Policy Platform, GIS tasks, and other digital/office tasks.  Fortunately, my position at PACDC gave me the opportunity to grow in these areas as well as expand upon other areas of knowledge. Surprisingly, the policy research I was doing at PACDC for the Equitable Development Policy Platform helped me with my thesis by encouraging me to read and better understand federal housing policies.

Overall, I am glad I participated in the Praxis Independent Study Program as I was able to challenge myself and apply my knowledge and skills in real world situations.

Before you go, I would like for you to ponder about one thing: What does it mean for a city, community, or neighborhood to be “equitable?”

Michelle Waksman, BMC ’24

Nonprofits in Local Politics

Semester: Fall 2022

Faculty Advisor: Marissa Golden

Field Site: League of Women Voters of Lower Merion and Narberth

Field Supervisor: Jamie Mogil

Praxis Poster:

Michelle Waksman_Poster_Final

Abby Krauss, BMC ’23

Nurturing Little Minds

Semester: Fall 2022

Faculty Advisor: Jim Martin

Field Site: EBS Children’s Institute of West Chester

Field Supervisor: Cristine Cappo

Praxis Poster:

Abby Krauss_Poster_Final


Further Context:

The experiences one has in childhood can profoundly impact the rest of their life. In my professional career, I want to help kids build the skills to process their life experiences, cope with different situations, and advocate for themselves. I am a senior Psychology major and a Child and Family Studies minor and I have always had a strong interest in clinical work with children, which I will be pursuing once I graduate from Bryn Mawr. My Praxis Independent Study has helped me to actualize the learning I have been doing throughout my undergraduate career and has helped me learn more about practicing psychotherapy with children through both my coursework and my field placement. For my Praxis Independent Study, I worked with Cristine Cappo, LPC, from the EBS Children’s Institute of West Chester, and James Martin, Professor Emeritus of Social Work and Social Research.

The EBS Children’s Institute of West Chester is a multidisciplinary clinic that provides psychotherapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy, feeding therapy, and physical therapy to children. They use an interdisciplinary approach, and many patients see therapists from multiple departments to best address and support their needs. I was an intern in the Child Psychology and Counseling Department, in which therapists use a family-centered and solution-oriented approach to support their patients. My responsibilities as a psychotherapy intern were to observe and participate in sessions with patients and parents under the supervision of Cristine Cappo, and help determine objectives and plan activities for sessions.

To get the most out of my experience at EBS, Professor Martin provided me with the support and resources to supplement the work I was doing at EBS. I became familiar with many informative sources that bolstered what I was learning through my experiences and was also able to benefit from Professor Martin’s extensive experience. To guide my learning, I had three learning objectives. My first learning objective was to learn more about the therapeutic process when working with children, such as the development of a relationship with the child in a clinical context and how to approach psychoeducational work with children. My second learning objective was to strengthen my overall understanding of the expression of psychological disorders in children, including an understanding of symptoms presented by children at this clinic. My final learning objective was to develop a greater understanding of the barriers to clinical care such as SES, the effect of stigma, and familial situations like divorce.

My experiences at EBS not only helped me to reach my learning objectives but also informed my future academic/career goals. I was able to establish a therapeutic relationship with children at the clinic, gain a greater understanding of the expression of psychological disorders in children, witness the complexities of providing psychological care in this setting, and gain a greater understanding of some of the barriers there can be to treatment. I am coming away from this experience knowing a great deal more about the field I am going into, and with even more excitement about my future academic and professional career.