Engagement with the local Harrisonburg community has been a central part of my teaching and creative practice. My focus has been on creative expression around themes of identity and place.

Below are some examples of community-engaged learning projects that I have designed and facilitated. Some collaborations have taken place over the course of several years, and others have been semester-long connections between JMU students and high school students or elementary students.

Elisabeth explaining something during a workshop
Facilitating the “Dreams Unfolding” workshop in 2023


The Face of COVID
Documenting life during the COVID-19 pandemic

Photo by Elisabeth Kvernen

Here + There (CWS)
Exploring Multi-layered Identity through Photography

Here + There Workshop
Photo by Emmanuel Eletere

Here + There (Skyline)
Photography Workshop at Skyline Middle School

Photography at Skyline Middle School
Photo by Terri Martin

Dreams Unfolding
Exploring Storytelling and Identity among Refugee Youth

Dreams unfolding workshop
Photo by Steve Aderton

Mindfulness Meadow
Exploring mindfulness and kindness with elementary students

Photo by Brooke Imber

Engagement Activities

Community Service Learning Workshop in Spain

Sharing learnings at the Blended Intensive Program at URV

In March 2024 I attended a workshop/conference focused on implementing community service-learning projects in the classroom at Universitat Rovira i Virgili in Tarragona, Spain.

Poster Presentation at UCDA Educators Conference

In May 2023, I presented a poster on “Here & There: Exploring Multi-layered Identity through Composite Photography,” at the University & College Designers Association Design Educators Summit.

Panel at Broadcast Education Association Conference 

In April 2023, I presented on “From Clients to Collaborators: Community-Engaged Projects in the Design Classroom,” at the Broadcast Education Association convention. Check out my slides.