from FSU Art BA ’19 Joanne Yoo:
“My time at Pyramid, though short can be best represented as a colorful bouquet of joy, laughter, and a lot of high-fives (My hand muscles gained muscles!). I am so grateful to serve as an art intern for fellow teachers and students alike. My role is primarily to encourage students in their path to independence, and support their creative endeavors. This includes aiding in the application of paint or glue for students who cannot do so themselves, oversee productivity and provide guidance when asked for. Along with serving as an assistant to the teacher, I am often tasked with multiple projects that call for me to use my own skills in laying a drawing/painting foundation for students to work upon. Currently, I am taking on the role as a sponsor for a student running for vice president of the student council.
Not only was I able to form bonds with the lovely students and teachers, I gained foundational experience and understanding of people with disabilities through observing how the teachers interacted with their students, as well as how the students communicate amongst themselves. As a student aspiring to work as an art therapist, I believe that gaining experience is vital in the ability to understand and aid the diverse population in our community. The main takeaways from my time thus far have to be in the introduction to sign language, as well as being prepared and have a basic knowledge of how to act in different situations at Pyramid. Each student has their own specific needs, and despite my inability to personally aid them, I learned by watching the teachers and how they give their genuine care towards all of their students.
There is never a boring day at Pyramid. It is simply impossible. There are too many funny and bright people and they refuse to dull their joy! Therefore, choosing a specific memorable moment is quite difficult. However, I would say that our daily dance breaks are a case to share. Yes, we dance. Quite often too. This is how we encourage our creative juices to flow. In all seriousness, sharing a moment to move in rhythm is a way of communication. Witnessing how music and art can provide comfort and unity was really nice and fun to be a part of. Also, just listening to different stories, and hearing various dreams and ideas have inspired my own visions as an artist.
If you love people and art, I highly encourage you to come and intern/volunteer at Pyramid Studios. There are many challenges that goes into the job, though I was often told that challenges present themselves as an opportunity for growth, and I am learning to have more appreciation for them. To be honest, I feel I was given more than what I gave. The students and teachers are so very warm and welcoming as they truly are a large, loving family! As an artist, I believe that our community is the driving heartbeat of creating art. Painting and drawing is an art form however, sharing life stories and experiences along with laughter and pain is art in of itself. Combining these two created countless speckles of golden moments in my life.”