Image courtesy of Tye Clarke.
The ABOVEGROUND RAILROAD is a scaffolding artwork by Jessica Gaynelle Moss that reimagines philanthropy and giving as an opportunity to simplify access to resources, perpetuate lasting social good, support more equitable funding approaches and practice the kind of decision making I want to see in the world.
The ABOVEGROUND RAILROAD SCHOLARSHIP
was created in 2018 in partnership with Elsewhere Museum in Greensboro, NC. This scholarship supports one Black, NC Triad-based, women-identifying, current high school student, under the age of 18, interested in a career in arts administration.
The ABOVEGROUND RAILROAD GRANT AWARD
was created in 2020 in partnership with The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowment in Pittsburgh, PA. This grant program supports three Pittsburgh-based Black students currently pursuing a degree in higher education towards a career in arts administration with a $10,000 unrestricted award. This funding stream will consider racial and gender equity explicitly, with a strong preference towards students identifying as Black women.
Both programs that make up The ABOVEGROUND RAILROAD provide access, opportunities and financial support to future generations of Black women arts workers and administrators. This work is intended to be a launching pad towards a successful career within the arts industry through unrestricted financial support, opportunities to develop a unique skill set, practical experiences that build upon existing interests, and opportunities to network with professionals across the field.