Posted May 01, 2013
Tasha Sandoval (History/Art History) first became involved with the McKeen Center her freshman year through one of the Bowdoin Volunteer Corps’ many programs, Students Mentoring through Art, better known as SMArt. SMArt visits a local elementary school and mentors students through weekly creative art projects.
Moving into her sophomore year, Tasha participated in both the Alternative Spring Break and the Alternative Winter Break programs. In the winter, Tasha participated in an Alternative Winter Break trip to Portland, ME, in several organizations that worked on refugee and immigrant resettlement in the area. Through ASB, Tasha travelled to Guatemala City, Guatemala and volunteered at the Bowdoin alumnus-founded non-profit organization, Safe Passage. Tasha returned to Guatemala this spring co-lead the 2013 ASB trip to Safe Passage.
Tasha’s experiences with these programs motivated her to increase her involvement with McKeen Center. In her sophomore year, following her AWB trip, Tasha travelled to Portland weekly to tutor at the Portland Housing Authority Study Center.
After her semester abroad in Nantes, France, Tasha returned to continue to mentor through SMArt and to apply and receive the McKeen Center’s Global Citizens Grant. With this grant, in the summer of 2012, Tasha travelled to Cape Town, South Africa, where she spent 10 weeks as the educational intern at the District Six Museum. The District Six Museum tells the story of the violent forced removals imposed by the apartheid government on District Six, a downtown area of Cape Town. Through exhibitions, public programs, and community workshops, the museum is a supportive entity for its surrounding community. While in Cape Town, Tasha embarked on community-based research for her senior honors thesis about the museum and its place in South African post-apartheid memory studies. Because of the very positive experience she had working with older community members at the museum, Tasha joined another Bowdoin Volunteer Corps group as a senior. Sunnybrook Mentoring visits a local retirement community on a weekly basis.
As a Bowdoin senior, Tasha is the McKeen Fellow for Community-based Courses and Research. She works closely with McKeen Center staff to provide needed assistance to existing community-based courses, to create forums for students conducting community-based research and to develop, strengthen and grow the program. She is organizing Bowdoin and the Common Good: A Celebration of Community this month that celebrate the achievements and contributions of student community-based courses and research within the last year.
Tasha hopes to continue to engage with her community beyond Bowdoin. After teaching English abroad, she plans to pursue a graduate degree in history or museum and heritage studies.
“Bowdoin and the Common Good: A Celebration of Community: Thursday, May 9, 3:30-5:00pm Morrell Lounge, Smith Union”