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A summer of creativity with arts intern

Children and adults supported by LifeScape are getting daily arts experiences this summer thanks to arts intern Jaclyn Laprath of Colome, SD. Jaclyn is pursuing an Arts in Health Certificate from the University of South Dakota’s College of Fine Arts.

Her internship is being served through LifeScape’s Center for the Arts. Artistic Director Jamie Richardson of the Center for the Arts has set up a schedule for Jaclyn to work on arts projects with kids and adults each weekday through early August 2022. “Since I run the program alone, having an additional set of hands to bring these opportunities forward just helps us to create more and more opportunities for creativity, friendship, and working towards our mission of helping people to live their best lives,” says Jamie. “Every day is better when we include more creativity and fun!”

The Arts in Health certificate program is under the direction of USD Professor Ariadne (Ari) Albright. Through four 400-level classes, students learn to use the fine arts to help develop patient care tools to assist medical professionals in patient treatment. Jaclyn is also seeking a degree as a Speech-Language Pathologist. “I want to be able to incorporate this into my future speech therapy sessions to help facilitate communication,” says Jaclyn. “I look forward to bringing together my two loves, art and speech.”

After a pandemic hiatus of over two years, Jamie says she’s thrilled to bring the Center for the Arts back into full swing. “The arts bring so much joy,” says Jamie. “And who couldn’t use more joy?”

Other Center for the Arts activities are making post-pandemic comebacks, too. Camp Bravo, the children’s all-abilities performing arts camp, will be back next summer, and Camp Create, the artists retreat for adults with disabilities, will happen in September and February. Jamie hopes CFA can stage a musical production in the next few months, and a fun, new offering is musical theater watch parties for adults. Jamie found that many adults supported by LifeScape love the genre but haven’t had much exposure to it. So, a subscription to the streaming service Broadway HD will keep the monthly gathering in musicals for a long time to come.

Jaclyn sets up a painting project for a student who uses her feet rather than her hands for functional activities.

The LifeScape Center for the Arts is funded by a bequest from the Althea Louise Kelly Center for the Arts Endowment.

Click here to see the Dakota News Now story on our arts program and Citibank volunteers!

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