The Center for Community and Economic Development at the University of Central Arkansas partnered with Blackbird Academy of Arts, Inc., a local nonprofit agency, to highlight their community arts programs. From now until spring, works by young Blackbird Academy artists will be on display in the Brewer-Hegeman Conference Center on the UCA campus.

Jennie Strange, executive director of Blackbird Academy, noted, "The main purpose of Blackbird Academy of Arts is to provide a quality, comprehensive arts education to all our students. We believe a large part of this is giving our students opportunities to take what they are learning in their classes out into the community."

Josh Markham, assistant director for the Center for Community and Economic Development, remarked, "UCA is happy to have the opportunity to help showcase the work of Blackbird Academy’s students. The arts are an important part of a thriving community, and we are proud of the work Blackbird Academy commits to everyday to educate children and adults. This exhibit is a great way for these students to display their work to a wider audience."

Strange said, "….we are so thankful to UCA for the chance for our students’ work to be displayed at the Brewer-Hegeman Center. It shows our students that their work has value outside of Blackbird, and gives them confidence in their ability to show their work."

The Center for Community and Economic Development is a part of UCA’s Division of Outreach and Community Engagement. The Center manages the Community Development Institute Central, supports Arkansas communities and community developers, and represents the university in its community engagement efforts.