Two Kent State Professors Awarded Creative Workforce Fellowship | Kent State University

Two Kent State Professors Awarded Creative Workforce Fellowship

Kent State University professors Catherine Wing and Darice Polo were two of 40 recipients honored by the Community Fellowship for Arts and Culture for art contributing to youth education and heightened awareness of the environment, community and place within Cuyahoga County.

Wing, associate professor of English, plans to use the fellowship grant to work on writing new poems and revising old ones.

“In my proposal itself, part of the idea was to take some time off so I would teach a little less and write a little more,” Wing says. “This fellowship helps prioritize my writing.”

Wing will be offering a series of workshops with Lake Erie Ink and Literary Cleveland, two Cuyahoga County writers’ organizations.

Wing, who has an interest in writing poetry about science, says the fellowship will allow her to financially afford volunteering her time with the workshops.

She says there is a significant community aspect to the fellowship where fellows are able to gain insight to future projects based on the production of other fellows’ work.

“The fellowship is validation of one’s work,” Wing says. “It makes you feel part of a community of artists, and I feel really honored to be a part of that community.”  

Polo, associate professor of art, applied for the fellowship to support the post-production phase of her film, A Wise Latina Woman.

“I am using this fellowship to address the plight of Puerto Rico, preserve its history and give voice to struggles within Puerto Rican communities around the world and in Cuyahoga County,” Polo says.

Polo says although the film is a departure from drawings and paintings she previously focused on, it still revolves around the same themes as her previous work and provides a distinct voice to address the challenges facing the Puerto Rican people and diaspora.

Polo says she plans on approaching public venues and community organizations within Cuyahoga County over the coming months to arrange a public event.

“The public activity will revolve around themes within the film and take the form of an exhibition or a public forum on memory and issues of displacement,” Polo says.

For a complete list of winners of the Creative Workforce Fellowship, visit www.CultureForward.org/fellowship.