Registration is open for a unique, three-week virtual series that explores the intersection of economic prosperity, education, health and well-being, and social capital in community. The West Michigan Center for Arts + Technology is hosting WMCAT 20/20: Exploring Intersecting Visions for the Future, presented by Steelcase, beginning April 13 and running through April 27, 2022.
Area leaders, doers, thinkers, and stakeholders are invited to participate in active learning from national keynote speakers and local thought leaders, while engaging with relevant content and each other. Registration is now open at wmcat2020.org.
“We want to create a space to push our thinking, foster conversations, and help people make connections,” said Jamon Alexander, president + CEO of WMCAT. “For more than 15 years WMCAT has provided equitable access to opportunity through youth arts engagement, workforce development and social enterprises. We work at the intersection of different systems. This is the inspiration behind WMCAT 20/20, to host a series that gives participants the same opportunity to explore and question the intersections of community prosperity.”
Mia Birdsong will kick off the series on April 13, speaking at the intersection of social capital, economic prosperity and justice, and health and well-being. Author of “How We Show Up: Reclaiming Family, Friendship, and Community” and Executive Director of Next River, Mia is a facilitator, pathfinder, and activist who steadily engages the leadership and wisdom of people experiencing injustice to chart new visions of American life.
Dr. Andre M. Perry will close the series on April 27, speaking at the intersection of education, social capital, and economic prosperity. Dr. Perry is a senior fellow with the Brookings Institute and a scholar-in-residence at American University. A nationally renowned thought leader in K-12 education, Dr. Perry founded the College of Urban Education at Davenport University in 2013.
WMCAT looks forward to announcing the speaker for April 20 very soon.
The virtual series will be professionally produced and hosted on the interactive platform Remo, through which participants can connect with each other at virtual tables, ask questions of panelists and speakers, and engage with additional resources for learning. To foster additional community-building, WMCAT will host an in-person, pre-series happy hour for all registered participants.
This is the second iteration of WMCAT 20/20. After a pivot from a planned two-day, in-person event in June 2020, WMCAT hosted a seven-month virtual series last year titled WMCAT 20/20: Exploring Conflicting Visions for the Future that convened a diverse audience to advance conversation and learning around community prosperity. An impactful experience for more than 200 engaged participants, the inaugural series confirmed the need for this intentional and intersectional space in our region. With that in mind, WMCAT decided to bring back the series in a streamlined format over three consecutive weeks in April that will provide timely resources and relevant voices.
Registration for the entire series is $175 and can be purchased at wmcat2020.org. Registered participants will receive a guiding framework for engagement at the beginning of April, followed by:
- Invitation to an in-person happy hour on April 12 from 4:30-6:30 p.m.
- Three weekly virtual community meetings on Wednesday April 13, 20, and 27 from 12-1:30 p.m. EST with a featured keynote speaker, local artist highlight, live Q + A, and opportunities for discussion.
- Emailed resources for reflection and further learning.
- A curated engagement kit, with special treats and learning materials.
To ensure the series is accessible and inclusive to all who wish to attend, reduced rate registrations will be available upon request. Learn more here: wmcat2020.org/attend.