University of Hip-Hop
Welcome to the University of Hip-Hop We are a multidisciplinary school of the street arts... Our students learn how to use graffiti arts, break-dance, emceeing, and turntablism for community beautification and transformation... We have teachers and youth who work across the country helping to design hip-hop community development projects and bring living color to the universe through hip-hop... Share your light with us, and let's build ideas for hip-hop work in the 21st Century!

Who are Our Teachers?

By Sun Run 1

Liz LP sometimes better known as BELOVED (Bad Ass Belo), CBS CREW, CHI-ROCK CHPT 3 ALLSTARS.

Co-creator of the original Vision Village (75% calamity, 25% amazing). Our goal was to create a physical place where hiphoppers from all over coul dgather for breakdancing practice, ryme writing and anything else we could think of. At the time there was nothing like this except for parks and street corners. The Village stayed open for 1.5 years but we lacked some key structural elements and ended up closing. I now organize with The World Can’t Wait! Stop the Crimes of Your Governement! I do the accounting and I enjoy participating in creative street actions, reading poems and making signs. I want to use my managerial skillz and energy contect the Resistance movement with Hiphop. I am a poet, illustrator and would love to get back into painting. I’d like to see more young female MCs.
 


 

Resistance Builder,

The World Can't Wait! 


Protestor, Loud Speaker, Freeway Blogger.


Old Skool MC, Storyteller. 


Has-been Bomber, Doodler, Southside Scribe.


New Mother, Truth Speaker, Problem Solver,

Reader.
Movement Student.
Ever Curious.


David Marques

Raised a military brat by Filipino and Portuguese immigrants, David M. often finds himself moving about with a mantra of challenging notions of home and identity. After graduating from the University of Notre Dame with a degree in Anthropology, he took on a life of direct service to youth and communities, first as a youth worker in McKinley Park, Chicago and then as a teacher in San Pedro Sula, Honduras. Currently, he resides in Pilsen, Chicago and works as the Technology & Media Director for the Southwest Youth Collaborative. Working in administrative, developmental, and programmatic roles, David finds a niche working within the intersections of community-based organizations, non-profit technology, and youth empowerment. 

An active community member, David also serves various arts, activist, research & education groups.  He currently serves in advisory roles with the Chicago Idealist Network, Literacy Works, Project Focus (Uganda), Teachers for Social Justice, AREA Magazine, and Chicago Youth Initiating Change. He is a member of the Fire This Time Fund giving circle and has also served in technical roles for National Gathering for Justice, Arab American Action Network, Teacher Activist Groups (TAG) national network, Education Rights Coalition, Safety Networks Anti-violence Initiative, and Ella’s Daughters. David enjoys teaching youth the ins & outs of documentary video, audio, graphics & blogging, and in his free time is a freelance photographer, web designer & DJ.

Anna Viertel: Urban Agriculturalist

Anna Viertel is the Chicago Botanic Garden’s Coordinator for School Gardens.  In this capacity, Ms. Viertel has delivered training and technical assistance, curriculum development, teacher professional development, and administrative support to schools that are implementing sustainable gardening initiatives and educating towards environmental stewardship.  She came to the Botanic Garden a year and a half ago from Growing Power, a Midwestern not-for-profit, grass roots organization where she worked on all aspects of Chicago project design, administration, and implementation.  There Ms. Viertel administered a food distribution program, ran the Chicago Growing Power Youth Corp, and was responsible for design and maintenance of several urban agriculture sites and community gardens, along with all site-specific programming.  Through several years’ on staff for Farm Crew and The Liberty Partnership Program at the Mountain School Farm in Vershire, VT, Ms. Viertel gained knowledge of sustainable agricultural systems as well as the many ways they can be implemented in educational contexts.  She has diverse experience working with young people in rural and urban farms and gardens for educational as well as therapeutic purposes.  She received her BA in Art History from the University of Chicago. 


Trinidad Castillo-

Original University Of Hip Hop student as of ’98.

Began breakdancing and learned skills in the graffiti arts. Studied under Raven and Zore thru various community mural arts projects. Attended many travels through UHipHop: doing outdoor and environmental hip-hop education in Polo, Illinois. Collaborated with youth in a cross-train with Higher Gliffs in Oakland, California. Participated in a cross-train with Ghetto Film School in the Bronx, and did hip-hop arts education in Pine Ridge, South Dakota with the Red Noize project. Evolved as a student through out the years, and now taking a lead role as Coordinator of University of Hip Hop working out of the Southwest Youth Collaborative. Working on University of Hip-Hop programming around the 4 elements of hip-hop and hip-hop culture awareness. Concentrating on creating youth lead programs and establish future leaders.

Jonathan St. Clair a.k.a Inlight

Jonathan St. Clair a.k.a. Midnight Inlight is a member and artistic director of Stick and Move Dance Crew. An artist specializing in Breakdancing, Hiphop choreography, acrobatics, and poetry, Jonathan Keeps his focus on the health and well being of the human family and the planet. Workshops… taught @ U of C, Loyola University, Kenwood, Revere, Safe spaces (home for battered women @ children… BET’s 2005 spring bling dance Champions…    Jonathan St. Clair a.k.a. Midnight Inlight is a member and artistic director of Stick and Move Dance Crew. An artist specializing in breakdancing, hip-hop choreography, acrobatics, and poetry, Jonathan keeps his focus on the health and well being of the human family and the planet. In addition to teaching break-dance and the history of hip-hop to young people, he initiates dialogue with them about diet, well-being, and healthful balance for the body.  From 1999-2003, he taught breakdance to youth for the Chicago Park District at Promontory Point in Chicago’s Hyde Park community.  Jonathan went on to direct the after-school breakdance program for Paul Revere grammar school, where he worked with 20-30 youth at a time on choreographed performances.  As part of the Student Fine Arts Fund grant, he taught breakdance to homeless youth at a domestic violence shelter called Safe Space on the south side of Chicago.  He has led dance workshops at various high schools and universities, including Kenwood Academy, Jones College Preparatory high school, the University of Chicago, and Loyola University. His dance troupe, Stick and Move, won BET’s 2005 Spring Bling dance competition, which was broadcast nationally for several days. 


Tyre Taylor (a.k.a. Ice Water) is a young talented student at the Multicultural Arts high school.

I love to dance and I play basketball for my school. I am a hip-hop dancer and I want to show people that break dancing is still alive. I keep myself busy by participating in different school activities. Also, I’m a University of Hip-Hop representative for my school. I intend to be a young hip-hop artist that will help other individuals that have problems and be there for other young people.


Lavie Raven

Minister of Education, University of Hip-Hop

Lavie Raven is a social studies and language arts instructor at the Multicultural Arts School (a Chicago public high school), and the Prime-Minister of Education for the University of Hip-Hop. Having taught in the Chicago public school system for thirteen years and done community arts work for twenty years, Raven has created strategies for integrating hip-hop into community service projects and classroom education. He has worked with youth on many community hip-hop arts programs and social justice projects, for groups such as Habitat for Humanity, Pogranizce (Borderlands Project), Alternatives community center, the Southwest Youth Collaborative, the Chicago Park District, the University of Chicago, the Chicago Public Schools, and numerous other organizations. Raven has also done community mural projects in Sejny, Poland; Liberia, Costa Rica; Oakland, California; New Orleans, Louisiana; Aleut Bay, British Columbia; and Pine Ridge, South Dakota.  He is presently completing his doctorate in interdisciplinary studies at Teacher’s College at Columbia University, researching the impacts of hip-hop education and the integration of alternative arts on community development guided by youth centered curricula.

As one of the co-founders of the University of Hip-Hop, a multi-disciplinary school of the street arts, Raven helped to create a dozen charter branches that serve youth across the city of Chicago and throughout the nation. Raven is a certified teacher of social studies and English, grades 7-12, and he has taught courses in World Studies, African-American History, Argument and Debate, Popular Culture, and English, levels I-IV. In his experience as an educator Raven has assisted youth in addressing issues of social justice through the public arts and community service-learning projects. As a mural artist he has worked with youth to create culturally conscious murals that have been displayed at museums, cultural centers, and community organizations. Raven believes in providing youth with a multi-disciplinary approach toward life that holistically engages their academic skills, celebrates their talents and artistic abilities, and empowers youth desires to bring positive change to society. In his work for local, national, and international communities, Lavie Raven continually strives to spearhead unconventional and prolific youth empowerment projects in and out of the classroom.

Jocorey Jenkins- Mural Artist and Music Production Instructor

 

Jocorey Jenkins is one of the original students of the University of Hip-Hop, who has gone on to teach fine arts and mural arts practices to youth of all ages, and is a leader in music production through computer technology.  As the Minister of Creation for UHipHop he has excelled as a public arts leader and youth advocate.  From 2000-2002 Jocorey taught as a UHipHop instructor for grammar school students participating in after-school programming at Paul Revere school.  As a result of that program, youth produced a four block-long mural that graces the neighborhood with motivational ideas conceived by Revere students.  During the summer of 2001, Jocorey was a youth supervisor for UHipHop, and assisted in program development and youth organizing at the Southwest Youth Collaborative.  From 2000-2001, Jocorey was one of the mural artists who voluntarily worked with Kenwood Academy youth to create a mural depicting Ancient Egyptian culture.  That mural was subsequently on display in the opening hall of the Oriental Institute for ten months.  He has painted murals for the community in Oakland California, South Bronx, New York, and in Pine Ridge, South Dakota.  Over the years 2003-2006 Jocorey has been commissioned to paint murals for South Shore high school, and Best Practice high school.  At both schools he painted education-based murals on three floors of each campus that brighten the lives of students and motivates their academic achievements.  Jocorey has spent the last three years mastering the use of computer technology for music production and recording.  Using programs such as Fruity Loops and Pro Tools, he has created more than a thousand instrumentals, many of which have been used by rap groups throughout Chicago.  As a member of the Stony Island community rap group, he has performed at community events for organizations in Chicago and for the general hip-hop community.  Jocorey is presently working as an advisor for youth development and positive protocol procedures for the Southwest Youth Collaborative’s UHipHop charter.

 

 

Melody Weinstein- Video Documentary Instructor

 

Melody Weinstein is the video-documentarian who spearheaded the first UHipHop multi-media program at Paul Revere grammar school from 2001-2003.  Through dialogue and experiential training Melody has helped youth create video projects reflecting their family’s lives, their school communities, and their ideas about hip-hop education.  She began her video work when she created a documentary about Chicago graffiti community in the year 2000, entitled The Writing on The Wall. She then went on to create the University of Hip-Hop’s first introductory video, which has been used over the last five years to demonstrate the importance of hip-hop education. During the summer of 2005, she received a grant from the Emmy chapter of New York to create a documentary film about Hip Hop in Japan. She spent two months in Tokyo, Japan, and has a produced a documentary film that addresses the historical development and present practices of Tokyo’s hip-hop community. This film will serve as a template for UHipHop youth to learn how to do global hip-hop research through interviews, collaborative public arts projects, and the intricate processes of documentary filmmaking. Melody is a graduate of the University of Chicago, and she recently received her Masters at NYU, where she studied broadcast journalism. While at NYU, she worked as a graduate assistant and taught workshops on video production and digital editing, with a focus on documentary development. In September of 2005, she accompanied a group of NYU journalism students to Houston Texas, where they reported on the victims of Hurricane Katrina. That trip resulted in a half-hour television special on NYU TV about the importance of visual documentation as a tool for education. Melody is dedicated to documentary filmmaking and inspired by the strength and imagination of the youth she has worked with.  Drawing on her experience, she will help the students produce film-based UHip-Hop apprentice manuals that document diverse hip-hop education practices. 

 

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