Bits & Bytes: Joshi to address area educators; elder activist TV programs; pajama drive; art awards for Monument students

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By Friday, Feb 16 Life In the Berkshires
Daniel Pomerantz, whose digital artwork is seen above, is one of a number of Monument Mountain Regional High School students who achieved distinctions from the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards (see item below). Image courtesy Monument Mountain Regional High School

Diversity and social justice expert to address Berkshire educators

Khyati Joshi, Ed.D.

Pittsfield — Award-winning educator and author Khyati Y. Joshi, Ed. D., will address Berkshire County educators on the topic of “Finding Comfort in Uncomfortable Conversations” Wednesday, Feb. 21, at Miss Hall’s School as part of her multi-day visit to the region to work with area educators to build more inclusive learning communities through better understanding of bias and privilege. Joshi’s visit is the result of an informal collaboration among Pittsfield Public Schools, Miss Hall’s School, and Williams College’s Davis Center and the Center for Learning in Action.

Joshi is a professor of education at Fairleigh Dickinson University in Teaneck, New Jersey. She was previously a visiting assistant professor at the Columbia University Center for the Study of Ethnicity and Race where she taught Asian-American studies and comparative ethnic studies for two years. She also taught in the American studies program at Princeton University. She is the author and co-editor of publications including “New Roots in America’s Sacred Ground: Religion, Race, and Ethnicity in Indian America”; “Teaching for Diversity and Social Justice, Third Edition”; “Asian Americans In Dixie: Race and Migration in the South“; and “Understanding Religious Oppression and Christian Privilege.” She has delivered continuing education seminars for members of the New Jersey judiciary and bar, and was a consultant for the Pew Research Forum’s survey on Asian Americans and religion. Professor Joshi earned her doctorate in social justice education at the UMass Amherst. She is a graduate of Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, and pursued post-graduate studies at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. She has appeared on C-SPAN, has been interviewed on PRI’s “The World” and the Danish Broadcasting Corporation, and quoted in the New York Times, the Times of India, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, the Boston Globe, Voice of America and other media outlets.


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CTSB airs programs spotlighting elder activists

Lee — The recently released feature film “The Post” revealed many pieces of the Pentagon Papers puzzle to a wide audience. Daniel Ellsberg photocopied 7,000 pages of the Pentagon Papers and, with an accomplice, handed them over to the Washington Post. Wendy Germain, a volunteer producer at Community Television for the Southern Berkshires, has recovered footage she filmed of Daniel Ellsberg speaking at Vermont’s Brattleboro Union High School in 2012. With the release of “The Post,” political economist and historian Gar Alperovitz went public Feb. 2 to reveal that it was he who assisted in handing over the Pentagon Papers to Washington Post journalist Ben Bagdikian in Boston 46 years ago. Alperovitz was the keynote speaker at the Berkshire Co-op Market’s 2013 annual meeting in Great Barrington, which was recorded by CTSB. Although his 2013 talk does not divulge information about the Pentagon Papers, it does give a perspective into the man who changed the course of history. Completing the trio of archived lectures by elder activists is “Go Granny D: Memoir of a 90 Something Activist.” Doris Haddock, better known as Granny D, walked 3,200 miles across the continental United States in 1999 at the age of 88 to shed light on her work as an advocate for campaign finance reform. Haddock died just as the Citizens United decision was handed down by the U.S. Supreme Court.

CTSB is airing the three programs on Channel 1301, video on demand through its website and linked in its Vimeo channel.


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Libraries partner with Boston Bruins for PJ Drive

Great Barrington — The staff, Friends and trustees of the Great Barrington libraries are teaming up with 128 libraries across the state, the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners and the Boston Bruins to participate in the Bruins’ annual PJ Drive to benefit the Massachusetts Department of Children and Families. The goalof the drive is to collect 15,000 pairs of new pajamas for children and teens in need.

Through Thursday, March 15, the Mason and Ramsdell libraries will be collecting new pairs of pajamas for babies, children and teens, and those wishing to donate may drop off new pajamas in the collection boxes at the libraries. Pajamas donated will be provided to Berkshire County families.

Other area libraries with collection boxes for the PJ Drive include the Berkshire Athenaeum in Pittsfield, the Lenox Library, and the Otis Library and Museum. For more information, contact Mason Library at (413) 528-2403.


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MMRHS students receive art awards from Scholastic

Artwork by Tagan Mundy. Image courtesy Monument Mountain Regional High School

Great Barrington — Monument Mountain Regional High School has announced that a number of its students have achieved recognition in the annual Scholastic Art & Writing Awards. Every year since 1923, Scholastic has offered a nation-wide juried competition in visual arts and writing for seventh- through 12th-graders. This year, more than 330,000 students across the country participated and MMRHS reported the highest number of winners it has had since entering the competition.

The winners are Ruby Jones: honorable mention for her portfolio in fashion design; Tallulah King: honorable mention for her mixed media piece “The Outing”; Eva Letteron: Silver Key for her photograph “Lady with Cat”; Makayla Levy: honorable mention for her untitled porcelain piece; Claudia Marino: Gold Key for her untitled poem; Tagan Mundy: two honorable mentions for painting and a Silver Key for her painting portfolio; Daniel Pomerantz: two honorable mentions for digital art; Braeden Rombach: honorable mention for comic art; Penelope Schwartz: two honorable mentions for mixed media and a Silver Key for her art portfolio; Cole Seitz: Silver Key for his short story “Stories We Tell Ourselves”; and Sophie Schron: Gold Key in painting for her W.E.B Du Bois mural and two honorable mentions in mixed media.


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