Katherine Wang ’21 stands in a field in summertime with a phone in her hand
March 31, 2022

Beyond the Stage, Beyond Andover: Katherine Wang ’21 Reflects on Her CAMD Scholars Project

Students in the “CAMD Scholars Program: Advancing DEIJ Teaching, Learning, and Community Outcomes” group dive right in
by Hannah ’22 & Jane ’22

In our first week of the *Workshop, we had the opportunity to interview Katherine “Kat” Wang ’21 about her experience as a CAMD Scholar. Kat’s spring 2021 presentation, “Turning Over a White Stage: Disrupting White-Affirming Racial Fetishism in ‘Elite’ White Concert Dance,” is still vivid and fresh in the minds of many current students.

In it, she explored how the dance stage objectifies racial bodies, and she used academic frameworks to reflect on her own embodied experiences as a dancer. With this opportunity to interview a recent scholar whose work has been so impactful on students, we kicked off our CAMD Scholars program oral history project, and Kat has already helped us understand how the program has evolved and where it might grow next.

For example, a major question we are investigating is if and how the post-Andover lives of alumni are influenced or affected by their CAMD Scholars experience. Kat shared with us the significance of her close relationship to Ms. Staffaroni [Emma Staffaroni, English instructor, Tang fellow, and director of the Brace Center for Gender Studies] and the potential impact such a close relationship between CAMD coordinators, project faculty advisors, and individual scholars can have academically and personally. Kat reflected on how she valued the creative license permitted to her as she embarked on both an unconventional and personal project, a great strength of the CAMD Scholars program.

We are also asking how and if the integration of the academic, diversity, and social justice skills and knowledge gained through a CAMD Scholars project would transfer beyond Andover. At first glance, it appears that CAMD Scholars take vastly divergent career paths from their projects. We are hoping that our oral history approach will reveal the actual impact of the CAMD Scholars program on participating student scholars which might not be obvious at first.

When posed this question, Kat defined the skillsets and valued experiences she gained from this process as less visible and quantifiable than we assumed it to be. Rather, the value of the CAMD Scholars program was more in the agency and personal journey that the research process granted her. She went on to explain how she was able to really dig deep into a topic that she could really make hers, dictate how she wanted to flesh it out, and make it what it needed to be in terms of how it affected her personally as a dancer. It wasn’t just an academic process. It was also a deeply personal one.

As we continue our research on the CAMD Scholars program and interview more individuals who were involved—including alumni, teachers, administrators, and more—we are learning to reflect on our own proximity and appreciation for this program and its effects.

This project is creating lots of questions that I (Jane) am grappling with as a current CAMD Scholar. Kat’s experience mirrors mine in remarkably relatable ways, and I can’t help but wonder where my CAMD Scholars experience has brought me and where it will continue to lead me.

As we continue our research on the CAMD Scholars program and interview more individuals who were involved—including alumni, teachers, administrators, and more—we are learning to reflect on our own proximity and appreciation for this program and its effects. All that from one interview.

With seven weeks left in the Workshop, we can’t imagine all the changes that will arise from this experience. Hopefully you’ll hear from us soon and about all our fun adventures!

The "CAMD Scholars Program: Advancing DEIJ Teaching, Learning, and Community Outcomes” group includes Jane ’22, Hannah ’22, Alicia ’22, Frank ’22, and Lily ’22.

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*THE WORKSHOP

Each spring term, the Workshop welcomes 20 seniors to this interdisciplinary, project-based course. With an eye toward reimagining what school can be, the Workshop is the senior’s onlyacademic commitment for the entire term. Instead of splitting their time and attention into units of distinct courses and fields of study, they work closely with peers, faculty, and community and global partners on a series of linked, interdisciplinary projects that revolve around a single theme. Within a chosen theme, students explore areas of personal interest. This year's theme is Experiments in Education.

During the first few weeks of the term, students are working on one of four faculty-led projects. We will be featuring blog posts by students during this time.

  • Historiography (led by Chris Jones)
  • Listening to Buddhists in Our Backyard (led by Andy Housiaux)
  • Andover’s CAMD Scholars Program: Advancing DEIJ Teaching, Learning, and Community Outcomes (led by Corrie Martin)
  • Bias (led by Nicholas Zufelt)

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Categories: The Workshop, Featured

Other Posts

Katherine Wang ’21 stands in a field in summertime with a phone in her hand
Beyond the Stage, Beyond Andover: Katherine Wang ’21 Reflects on Her CAMD Scholars Project

Students in the “CAMD Scholars Program: Advancing DEIJ Teaching, Learning, and Community Outcomes” group dive right in

empty garden boxes in an open field on a sunny day
Experiments in Education

How will meaningful learning occur in this year’s Workshop?