Learn about our Fall 2024 Social Impact Studios

Friday, February 23, 2024

Fall 2024 Studio courses will focus on data storytelling, game design, health communication and advocacy, and more! Social Impact Studios give Emerson students the chance to collaborate with grassroots changemakers across the city through the ELab’s two Social Impact Initiatives:

☮️ Transforming Narratives of Gun Violence 🌱 Transforming Narratives for Environmental Justice

🌱 ☮️ Data Storytelling for Social Justice

Students gathered around and pointing at a map on a wall

Number: JR 330x05 / SI 300x05

Instructor: Lina Maria Giraldo

Time: Fridays, 10am-1:45pm

+  Promote social, environmental, and racial justice through collaborative storytelling using data and data visualization. 

+  Examine historical and current data sets to understand the ongoing real impacts of policies on people in Boston communities, such as redlining on housing equity, green space, safety, and more. 

+  Explore the intersections of accessibility, health, environment, and social vulnerability alongside local residents and activists to create compelling stories that challenge the status quo. 

☮️ Games for Social Change

Learning partners gathered around a table with brainstorming materials

Number: VM 334x21 / SI 300x21 

Instructor: David Kelleher

Time: Fridays, 4pm-7:45pm

+ Apply the theory and practice of game design to create game experiences that promote peace and anti-violence, build relationships, and inspire action, in partnership with the Louis D. Brown Peace Institute in Dorchester.

+ Working alongside Boston-area community members impacted by gun violence, students will collaboratively design and publish games to support healing, promote peace in local communities, and drive social change.

+ No game design experience necessary!

🌱 Climate Futurism - Hybrid Storytelling

A collage of blue crumpled paper, newsprint, and a photo of waste being carried away

Number: VM 334x24 / SI 300x24

Instructor: Homa Sarabi

Time: Wednesdays, 4pm-7:45pm

+ Team up to create a multifaceted, expansive film that will tell local stories of possible climate futures

+ Investigate pressing environmental justice issues while collaborating with Learning Partners from community-based organizations

+ Experiment with innovative media production techniques incorporating both narrative and documentary filmmaking

☮️ Community Engaged Health Advocacy Strategies

Three people posing for a photo in a hospital

Number: HE 371x03 / SI 300x03 

Instructor: Jessie Quintero Johnson

Time: Tuesdays, 6pm-9:45pm

+ Learn and apply health communication strategies and develop educational and advocacy tools to promote and maximize the impact of social change messages alongside community partners.

+ This class will involve hands-on learning, occasional field trips, direct work with partner organizations, and ultimately the creation of tools and materials for use by partner organizations. 

🌱 Collaborative Documentary

An individual in front of a green screen being interviewed

Number: VM 334x23 / SI 300x23

Instructor: Jesse Epstein

Time: Tuesdays, 2pm-5:45pm

+ Learn and apply collaborative production skills to tell a nonfiction story about local environmental justice and climate resiliency efforts. 

+ Work alongside Learning Partners from local community-based organizations to tell powerful, authentic, and purposeful stories that can impact policy and decision-making. 

+ This is a unique opportunity to co-create films WITH community members, not solely about them.  

Co-Design Studio

Students working on a laptop and large pad of paper across a table

Number: SI 200x01

Instructor: Eric Gordon

Time: Tuesdays & Thursdays, 10am-11:45am

+ An immersive foundations course on co-design methodology and theory intended for students interested in equitably engaging with community partners in Social Impact Studios. 

+ Equips students with the design concepts, methods, and project management tools to effectively collaborate with partner organizations such as municipal government, nonprofit organizations, and grassroots community groups.

+ Learn the theory and practice of collaboration, the importance of power and positionality, and the value of dynamic and engaging design methods.