My Tri-C Life Project
Mr. Jimi Izrael is the Project Manager and Student Media Advisor at Cuyahoga Community College. About three years ago, Mr. Izrael started My Tri-C Life Projects, which is decidedly Metro-centric. My Tri-C Life is an interdisciplinary, blind collaboration wherein students from First Year Experience, English and other classes script out real-life scenes from their Tri-C experience that another student illustrates into an eight-panel story in comic-strip form. The first two issues involved all campuses.
Mr. Izrael was inspired to start My Tri-C Life by the writer Harvey Pekar who worked with artists like Clevelander Gary Dumm, to turn scenes from his everyday Cleveland life as an amateur scholar and professional file clerk into a graphic novel series called American Splendor that received international acclaim. Pekarused to say that, “we are all heroes of our own stories”, and Izrael sees heroes every day — in classes, on campus, at the bus stop. Izrael asks, “How did they get here? And where do they want to go? How does the life they live compare to the life they want? These stories matter because our students matter. The more they say, the more we listen, the closer we get, and the better we can serve them. Everyone has a story you can learn from. As Harvey might say, everyday life is pretty complicated stuff.”
The goal of this project is to get students trying something new and unique. Also, college life can be isolating at first. If students can read and share how they have navigated through — or not — maybe they won’t feel so alone and be empowered to stay the course.
The artist and writers of these stories have never met in person to discuss how the drawing, images, or contexts should be portrayed. Izrael explains that to instill rudimentary best practices about virtual collaboration is a necessary skill in the 21st century. To learn more about the project and to read past and current issues of My Tri-C Life go to: http://www.tri-c.edu/programs/creative-arts/my-tri-c-life-project.html
*The context of this article was taken from Tri-C Times Spring 2017