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Thursday June 1st

Arts Everywhere app allows students to locate and connect to arts events on campus

Arts everywhere app screenshot
Buy Photos Arts everywhere app screenshot

The Arts Everywhere initiative has launched an eponymous app, which allows everyone to locate all University arts events in one place. 

Chancellor Carol Folt launched the “Arts Everywhere” initiative in 2016 to develop and recognize the arts as an indispensable part of campus culture and daily life.

“We are committed to making our arts initiatives, departments and programs even more visible, and to supporting them as they continue to inspire innovation, discussion and reflection about creativity and the world,” said Folt in a press release.

Work on this app began about two years ago when Special Assistant to the Chancellor for the Arts Emil Kang and the Associate Director of Arts Everywhere Rachel Ash brought together students who told them where and how they wanted to see changes in the UNC arts community.

“The (app) came out of the Chancellor's vision for the arts at UNC,” Kang said. “It was a natural manifestation of this vision for the arts to be a present way of thinking and doing across campus.”

Rachel Ash took the reins in working with students in different focus groups to get the app off the ground. 

“We really got going in depth over a year ago with a team of students who started us off by leading some listening sessions,” said Ash.

Kang said one of their top priorities for the working group was to establish a resource where students can find out what arts events are happening across campus at places such as the Ackland Art Museum, Carolina Performing Arts and PlayMakers Repertory Company.  

“There wasn’t a single place to go to find all of this information so there was talk about creating some kind of way to find out what is happening," Kang said. "We wanted to create a go-to space. Where people could share, find and populate. It has led to the creation of this app.”

The app is compatible with both iPhones and Androids, and not only serves as a calendar, but as a way for other students to connect over arts events.

The app allows students and faculty to see if their friends are attending a certain event, or which student groups are performing on a certain day. It's personalized to each user's interests, making it an individual experience for all those who download it.

The Arts Everywhere creators are not the only people who can add events to the apps schedule. After some mild training, student groups and faculty can add their own arts events to the app.

“We want anyone who is involved in the arts to feel a sense of ownership with this app,” said Ash. “There is a really easy interface that allows anyone to become an administrator and add an event or a whole series of events. It is shared with everyone. We wanted to be open source in that way, so we can reach as many people as possible.”

Ash said the app is a unique feature among universities. 

“There is not an app out there among our peers that is doing what the Arts Everywhere app is doing," Ash said. "We hope it becomes a model for other institutions, and of course we like doing things first.”

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