Anna- Noel Bass-Riley
University of Pittsburgh | GreensburgBio:
Anna-Noel Bass-Riley spent six weeks in the city of Prague in the Czech Republic studying Creative Writing and Czech Art in Context with the School for International Training Program (SIT). During this time, Anna-Noel submitted eight pieces of writing for review to a Czech author named Petra Hůlová and read the work of four Czech authors, and then was given the opportunity to ask them questions about their work. She also went to lectures by several local artists about how they use their art in activism. She ended her six weeks by giving a presentation on two of the different artists she and her classmates listened to and then publicly read two of her writing pieces for an audience in a local bookstore. Through this process, Anna-Noel improved her writing abilities and was given a broader context of how activism is done throughout Europe. When not in classes, Anna-Noel immersed herself in local culture. She visited several cities in the Czech Republic, including Brno, Most, and Slavkov u Brna, and went to several different museums, including the Czech Museum of Music and the Museum of Romani Culture. She also attended several theatrical and musical performances, from a traditional opera to an Aurora concert. Anna-Noel went to local cafes to write in almost every day and became friendly with staff and regular customers. She traveled to most places by herself using the local transit system, increasing her ability to function independently of others. This experience has allowed Anna-Noel to become more aware of her surroundings and herself.
CEE Title: “ Do You Know What Cultural Bias Is?”
Our Community Engagement Experience was titled “Do You Know What Cultural Bias Is?” and was completed across two campuses, Duquesne University, and the University of Pittsburgh at Greensburg. Our CEE centered around cultural bias which steamed from my experiences in Prague, Czech Republic, and Ceilidh Wagner’s experience in Ireland. This event was done in a hybrid format to support engagement from each of our respective campuses. We opened our event with a presentation that provided the definition of cultural bias and followed with a short video to further engage the idea of what cultural bias is. Then we discussed our own experiences with cultural bias while abroad in our host countries. Our CEE finished with audience participation that engaged participants in questions surrounding their own experiences with cultural bias.