Teachers as change-makers

ArtsECO stands for Arts Education/Community Ecosystem. Centered out of UWM’s Peck School of the Arts Department of Art & Design, it develops teachers as change-makers. ArtsECO is backed by a strong and sustainable community of arts organizations, non-profits and K-16 school partnerships. The program recruits and develops thoughtfully engaged, social justice-oriented pre-service teachers and supports them as they grow into inspired mentors who integrate the arts into the classroom. The program develops teachers’ abilities to leverage and share the rich assets of Milwaukee and Southeastern Wisconsin.


The Milwaukee Visionaries Project
Art and animation after school program free to City of Milwaukee Middle and High School students

Pre-College Art & Design Program
On-campus Art & Design classes for Milwaukee-area High School students

ArtsECO Interns
Paid opportunities for UWM Art Education and School of Education students at UWM and area non-profit arts organizations

ArtsECO Fellows
Support for UWM Art Education and School of Education students, and faculty who engage with the ArtsECO programs.

Teacher MeetUps
Monthly teacher workshops with varying arts/arts-integration themes

Summer Institute
Intensive summer course work and professional development series for pre- and in-service teachers on-campus and through UWM collaborations with Lynden Sculpture Garden

Join the ArtsECO email List:

Teachers    UWM Students    General Interest

Arts Education/Community ECOsystem


ArtsECO Pre-College Art & Design Program

Summer 2021 Program:

COVID-19 UPDATE: The summer 2021 program will follow guidelines put forth from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for camps and youth programs. Art courses will likely be virtual with optional in-person outdoor art events TBD as we get closer to the start of programming.

Scholarships are available for ALL students. Scholarship applications are mailed in a paperwork packet AFTER registration. Fees are sliding scale: $15 per course for MPS students, $40 per course for non-MPS with scholarship, $75 per course for non-MPS no scholarship; includes instruction, supplies/materials, bus pass as needed.

ArtsECO Pre-College provides college-preparatory art and design instruction to Milwaukee-area high school students. Students build their portfolio and art-making skills as well as venture into new media such as printmaking, sculpture or digital processes. Tied to admissions, this on-campus experience may lead students to college applications, first-year opportunities and scholarships!

The Milwaukee Visionaries Project (MVP)

Milwaukee Visionaries Project – or MVP – gives Milwaukee-area middle and high school students a chance to tell their stories through video and animation. Participants use industry-standard professional tools to create films that are submitted to the Milwaukee film festival each year. MVP has had several award-winning films featured in Milwaukee Film!

In Fall 2020 students meet via Zoom on Thursdays from 5-6:30pm. Email MVP if you are interested in participating.

Go to the MVP Website

In addition, check out these Milwaukee Area Arts-Related program opportunities for HS Students:

  • Check Back: Arts Opportunities for High School Students

UWM Students

Watch the ArtsECO Commercial for UWM students!

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The ArtsECO Internship program is for UW-Milwaukee Art Education and School of Education students interested in teaching in and through the arts. Students are paired with an arts organization/program for semester-long paid experience in art and community-based education. Internships range from teaching/teaching assistance, museum/gallery education, art installation/archiving and arts administration. ArtsECO Interns attend mandatory orientation, training and debrief sessions before and after their semester of internship.

ArtsECO Internships

Interested in hosting a paid ArtsECO Intern? 


ArtsECO Fellows are UWM Art Education and “art-interested” UWM School of Education students who embark on a year-long engagement with the arts/arts-integration. Fellows receive SCHOLARSHIP SUPPORT for their UWM coursework. Fellowships are awarded annually in New Student, Art Education Pre-Service, Art Education Student TeachersPart-Time UWM/Part-Time MPS and School of Education Arts Integration categories and students may apply each year.

NOW ACCEPTING ArtsECO Fellows Applications for 2022/2023!  
Applications are accepted between December 15, 2021, and February 15, 2022.

To apply:

  1. Complete the ArtsECO Fellows Intent to Apply Form
  2. Complete/update your profile* on the UWM Scholarship Portal.

For questions about ArtsECO Fellows program, email ArtsECO Fellows at  If you have questions about the Panther Scholarship Portal, reach out to Rebecca Christman at

ArtsECO Fellows program requirements:

  • Attend the Arts Integration Bootcamp in May
  • Volunteer 5 hours in an art education program
  • Attend 2 ArtsECO Teacher MeetUps during your Fellowship year
  • Submit an art/arts-integrated artifact to the Annual ArtsECO Fellows Reception in January

Explore the ArtsECO Fellows resource library to access our full archive of art and art-integrated lessons and artifacts,

TEACH – Art Educators for Social Justice

What is TEACH? TEACH is a UWM student group for any Art Ed/Arts Integration interested students, where we can talk, share, learn, and make with one another! TEACH will allow you to connect with others and become a community for all, engaging in our own UWM community and outside as well! Members of TEACH host art education and community building events for interested students!! 

TEACH Resources

2020/2021 TEACH Officers

  • Allison Smith, President
  • Jaden Larsen
  • Alex Renier
  • Rhiannon Ruffner



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Teacher MeetUps are professional development and networking opportunities for Milwaukee area teachers who teach/are interested in teaching through the arts. They are open to any educator and no prior experience is needed. Each MeetUp has a different focus and includes instruction on a particular art tool/skill, opportunities to meet/network with other educators and time for teachers to make art. MeetUps occur monthly throughout the school year on a weekday evening.

2021/22 MeetUps – On Caring…

2021/22 Meet Ups

21-22 MeetUp #1 Resources – UWM Faculty Show
21-22 MeetUp #2 Resources – Social Media in Art & Education
21-22 MeetUp #3 Resources – Alternate Reality with Michael Coppage
21-22 MeetUp #4 Resources – Self-Care/Restorative Practices with Chauna Perry Finch & UWM Writing Project

MeetUp Archive
2020/21 Meet Ups

20-21 MeetUp #1 Resources & Recording – Art Education Alumni Exhibition
20-21 MeetUp #2 Resources & Recordings – Radical Publishing
20-21 MeetUp #3 Resources – Teacher as Performer
20-21 MeetUp #4 Resources & Recordings – Contemplative Practices (Gee’s Bend Quilts)
20-21 MeetUp #5 Resources – Prompts Against Anxiety
20-21 MeetUp #6 Resources & Recording – LaNia Sproles Tool Making Workshop
20-21 MeetUp #7 Resources – Early Career Studio Slam
20-21 MeetUp #8 Resources – 7th Annual Celebration of Teachers

2019/20 Meet Ups

Schedule & Resources
19-20 MeetUp Schedule
19-20 MeetUp #1 Resources – On the Wings of a Mariposa
19-20 MeetUp #2 Resources – Portraits of Milwaukee
19-20 MeetUp #3 Resources – Photographic Reflections
19-20 MeetUp #4 Resources – Contemporary Indigenous Art & Perspectives
19-20 MeetUp #5 Resources – Toward the Texture of Knowing
19-20 MeetUp #6 Resources – Art Build
19-20 MeetUp #7 Resources – Sherman Park Rising/Tia Richardson
19-20 MeetUp #8 Resources – Show, Share, Tell with Lynden

2018/19 Meet Ups

Schedule & Resources
18-19 MeetUp Schedule
18-19 MeetUp #1 Resources – Art & Urban Ecology
18-19 MeetUp #2 Resources – Serious Play
18-19 MeetUp #3 Resources – Therapeutic Art Making
18-19 MeetUp #4 Resources – Brilliant Sandbox

2017/18 Meet Ups

Schedule & Resources
17-18 MeetUp Schedule
17-18 MeetUp #1 Resources – Year of The Arts
17-18 MeetUp #2 Resources – Haggerty Museum of Art
17-18 MeetUp #3 Resources – Backstage Tour
17-18 MeetUp #4 Resources – Grant Writing/ Philanthropy
17-18 MeetUp #5 Time Lapse – Art Build
17-18 MeetUp #6 Resources – Self Care

2016/17 Meet Ups

Schedule & Resources
16-17 MeetUp Schedule
16/17 MeetUp #1 Resources – SLOs
16/17 MeetUp #2 Resources – Social Justice Curriculum Slam
16/17 MeetUp #3 Resources – Classroom Management, Grading, & High School Art
16/17 MeetUp #4 Resources – Bookmaking/Self-Care
16/17 MeetUp #5 Resources – Printmaking
16/17 MeetUp #6 Resources – Midwest Artist Studios Project
16/17 MeetUp #7 Resources – Writing The Galleries
16/17 MeetUp #8 Resources – 3rd Annual Celebration of Teachers

2015/16 Meet Ups

Schedule & Resources
2015/2016 MeetUp Schedule
15/16 MeetUp #1 Resources-Mining The Museum & 6-Word Memoir
15/16 MeetUp #2 Resources-Photo Transfer
15/16 MeetUp #3 Resources-DPI Fine Arts Assessment/SLOs
15/16 MeetUp #4 Resources & PPT-Disciplinary Literacy & Design Thinking
15/16 MeetUp #5 Resources-Scholars Lesson Exchange
15/16 MeetUp #6 Resources-Mindfulness & Community Building
15/16 MeetUp #7 Resources-Art & Industry, Silent Conversation
15/16 MeetUp #8 Resources & Etching Project – Digital Craft Research Lab
15/16 MeetUp #9 Resources-Lynden & Cyanotype

My Milwaukee Exhibition
ArtsECO partners regularly with The Milwaukee County Historical Society on a call for K-12 visual and literary works around themes related to Milwaukee (past, present and future). Works have been exhibited at the Historical Society since the Fall of 2016.

2014/15 Meet Ups

14/15 MeetUp #1 Resources-Self-care
14/15 MeetUp #2 Resources-Drawing with Technology
14/15 MeetUp #3 Resources-Printmaking for Social Change


ArtsECO Resources

These ArtsECO resources were created in UWM teacher preparation programs. They reflect current methodologies in education and art education research and fulfill national and Wisconsin state standards. They are free to adapt and use in your educational setting.

Have questions or want to know more? Email ArtsECO Fellows.

2021 ArtsECO Fellow Artifacts - ALL
Fellows Archive
2020 ArtsECO Fellow Artifacts - ALL
2019 ArtsECO Fellow Lessons - ALL
2018 ArtsECO Fellow Lessons - ALL
2017 ArtsECO Fellow Lessons - ALL
2016 ArtsECO Scholar Lessons - ALL
2015 ArtsECO Scholar Lessons - ALL

My Milwaukee Exhibition 2020: Living History

My Milwaukee 2020: Living History focuses on students thoughts and experiences during current times. Our three exhibitions are live and you can watch a recording of our celebration event from Thursday, March 18th, 2021 on Facebook Live!

For My Milwaukee 2020, students expressed what they saw, heard, and how they felt during the Covid-19 pandemic in art and writing. Virtual submissions are a cross-section of the experiences of Milwaukee youth. Big thanks to the teachers and students who submitted work from Brown Street Academy, Bruce Guadalupe Middle School, Dominican High, Downtown Montessori Academy, Garland School, Golda Meir High School, Hmong American Peace Academy, Manitoba, Maryland Avenue Montessori, Pius XI High School, Stormonth School, UCC Acosta Middle School, and West Allis Central High.

My Milwaukee 2020 Artifacts:
2020 My Milwaukee Exhibition: Living History call for K-12 student work
My Milwaukee Optional Collage Lesson (video)
Tips for Digital Documentation (taking pictures) of Work


National Resources: Kennedy Center ArtsEdge, Annenberg Learner, The Heart of Ed
Standards: National Core Arts Standards, Visual Art Student Portfolio Examples
Becoming a Licensed Art Teacher: UWM Art Education, ATCC
Connecting with Art & Nature: Lynden Sculpture Garden
Teaching Social Justice: Cult of Pedagogy