Dr. Renee Jackson
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Dr. Renee Jackson earned a PhD from the Education Department at Concordia University in Montréal, Québec Canada, an M.A. from the Art Education Department at Concordia University, a B.Ed from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in partnership with Mount Saint Vincent University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, and a B.F.A. in Visual Arts from York University in Toronto, Ontario. She has been an arts educator for seventeen years teaching first at the elementary and secondary levels in both public and private school settings. She was a lecturer on the faculty of Education at McGill University in Montréal for six years, and has also worked for the last six years in a community arts capacity with the nonprofit organization Culture for Kids in the Arts in Hamilton, Ontario. She served on the executive board for the Canadian Society for Education Through Art (CSEA/SCÉA) for seven years as a vice president and director.
Dr. Jackson’s dissertation research involved following and participating in a year-long, collaborative social justice video game design project involving an all female team of 15 girls in grade seven, 5 undergraduate students and the CEO of a small gaming company. Building off of the idea that such partnerships within schools can support contemporary versions of progressive informal learning environments (affinity spaces) in formal settings, Dr. Jackson’s ambition is to establish a long-term collaborative social justice game-design research partnership with a local school here in Philadelphia. She remains affiliated with the Technoculture Arts and Games lab at Concordia University (http://tag.hexagram.ca/about/), where her interest in video games and education originally developed.
Dr. Jackson’s art and teaching practices aim to inspire a sense of wonderment in both viewers and students. In her art practice, she works with everyday materials in unexpected ways to fabricate surreal creatures and situations, encouraging viewers to create their own narratives within her work. As a teacher, she emphasizes the ongoing development of artistic capacities in order to discover or further one’s personal sense of curiosity and determination through active engagement with life.