Date of Award

Spring 2021

Degree Type

Capstone - Open Access

Degree Name

Master of Education (MEd)



First Advisor

Audrey Falk

Second Advisor

Melissa Nemon


The overdevelopment of cities has caused residents to suffer from environmental and economic harm. Situated near a steel mill and a highway, and with less than 20% tree canopy, the Slavic Village neighborhood of Cleveland, Ohio is a community that may be in need of environmental justice. The movement to introduce green elements to urban environments is growing, and there are clear economic benefits to greening urban areas. Using art as a tool for education, this project proposes a series of six sustainable art installations that attempt to teach the community about environmental issues. Using this art project as a model, five interviews were conducted with leaders at community organizations who work in the Slavic Village neighborhood. The interviewees gave feedback that could be categorized into positive comments, concerns, environmental justice issues, potential barriers, avenues of engagement, similar projects and partnership ideas. This led to ideas for how this project could work or be adapted to better fit the community. This project could be used as a guide in preparation of community work that deals with vacant land or environmental justice issues. Further studies might take this project into the community to get feedback from neighbors before implementing aspects of the model.