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2013.10.03 > For Immediate Release
contact: Charley Reed - University Communications
phone: 402.554.2129 - email: unonews@unomaha.edu

UNO's Bart Vargas Teams With Norris Middle School to Turn Trash Into Art

Omaha - While most schools would like less trash in their hallways, Norris Middle School is collecting it for a collaborative service learning project with the University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) that will teach students how to make art out of discarded objects.

Super Tuesday

On Monday, Oct. 7, students from Jody Boyer’s class at Norris Middle School will visit with art students from Bart Vargas’ 3D design class to co-design found-object sculptures that, when completed, will be installed inside the Norris Middle School building.

In order to complete the project, the students will learn about scale, installation techniques, material, perspective and how to engage people through art.

This semester-long service learning project is part of UNO’s P-16 Initiative. As part of UNO’s Service Learning Academy, the P-16 Initiative facilitates partnerships between three key groups:

- UNO students and their teachers
- Pre school-through-high school students and their teachers
- Community organizations and their members

Through these service-learning partnerships, P-16 brings the classroom into the community through application of education to find solutions to real-life problems.

Vargas is a UNO alumnus and nationally-recognized artist. Since graduating from UNO in 2007, Vargas has made a name for himself in the national art scene, showcasing pieces in Omaha, Minneapolis, Chicago, Des Moines and Salt Lake City. Most in Omaha know Vargas for his contribution to the Omaha Chamber of Commerce’s O! public art project in 2007.

Boyer is an artists and teachers originally from Portland, Ore. who received her M.A. in intermedia from the University of Iowa. Her work has been showcased nationally, including prominent regional sites such as the Des Moines Art Center and Bemis Center for Contemporary Art.

For more information, please contact Laura Krueger, UNO Service Learning Academy at 402.554.2712 or by email lkrueger@unomaha.edu.

For media requests, please contact Charley Reed, UNO media relations coordinator, at 402.554.2129 or by email at unonews@unomaha.edu.

The P-16 Initiative works in partnership with Building Bright Futures in an effort to improve academic performance, raise graduation rates, increase civic and community responsibility and ensure all students are prepared for post-secondary education. The UNO Service Learning Academy facilitates collaborative partnerships between the university and the metropolitan community for the purpose of enhancing student learning; advancing community service and initiatives; and fostering engaged citizenship.

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The University of Nebraska at Omaha (UNO) is Nebraska’s metropolitan university. The core values of the institution place students at the center of all that the university does; call for the campus to strive for academic excellence; and promote community engagement that transforms and improves urban, regional, national and global life. UNO, inaugurated in 1968, emerged from the Municipal University of Omaha, established in 1931, which grew out of the University of Omaha founded in 1908.

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