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Expo Sustainability Project

LA Commons and longtime funder USC Good Neighbors are proud to kick off another great year of programming at the Expo Center. The Youth Artists as Civic Leaders program aims to enhance the civic leadership capacity of youth around the University Park Campus by training participants to expand their knowledge of local community issues, particularly environmental sustainability and climate change, while engaging fellow community members in the creation of a major public artwork.

This year, we have enrolled 24 youth artists who will focus on themes of Food Security, Food Justice, and the utilization of green space to advance sustainability efforts in South LA. Over the past few years, we have shifted from the theme of environmental sustainability to food security to better address the voices of the local community and youth who have identified the urgent needs of their neighbors.

USC Arts and Architecture students are mentoring youth during weekly workshops at the Expo Center. Program participants are delving into topics such as the built environment and the importance of green space in their neighborhoods. To not only educate youth but also the broader community, we will be hosting several events throughout South LA filled with artmaking, community engagement, and educational opportunities. This month, students had the chance to explore the Expo Park Rose Garden and participate in a Climate Day art activity in collaboration with USC Arts in Action. We’ll also engage the larger LA community in an environmental arts activity at the annual LA Times Festival of Books held on the USC campus this Sunday!

Our program team is thrilled to continue strengthening our partnership with local organizations focused on climate resilience and gardening initiatives to inspire our students as they learn under the mentorship of a lead artist.

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