Recap with Zamara Choudhary, Spring 2017 Microgrant Recipient


We caught up with our Spring 2017 Microgrant Recipient, Zamara Choudhary.

Funding from the ARAD Microgrant supported Zamara’s participation in the National Muslim Women’s Leadership Summit at the Harvard Kennedy School.

Describe the opportunity you participated in and how it aligns with your career aspirations.

I attended The National Muslim Women’s Leadership Summit, which empowers over 50 young Muslim women from across the United States to tackle the most pressing issues facing minority communities by bringing them together for an organizing bootcamp weekend at Harvard Kennedy School. The Summit, organized and sponsored by Women’s Initiative for Self Empowerment (WISE), kicked off a year-long fellowship geared toward supporting the participants as they execute their unique projects.

The Summit provided me with a schema and a supportive network to develop Beyond Boundaries, a social media platform to enable those who identify as Muslim women to express themselves through any art form of their choosing. Set to launch in the very near future, the mission of Beyond Boundaries is to foster cross-cultural exchange and understanding by shattering the myth of the monolith and of the passivity of Muslim women.


What were the most important takeaways from your experience?

The Summit distilled within me an overwhelming feeling of reinvigorated passion to effect change in a world that so desperately needs it. Being surrounded by a network of such supportive, dedicated, and motivated individuals makes me believe social justice is not just a buzz phrase or a castle hidden in the clouds amidst a mythical Shangri-La— it is actually possible.


How has the microgrant helped to enrich you professionally?     

Without support from the ARAD microgrant, I would not have had the opportunity to cultivate relationships with a professional network with diverse interests not limited to the arts, law, film, health, and journalism. In such a connected world, I believe we must be open to collaboration with multiple fields in order to optimize the impact of our work as arts administrators.

Congratulations to our Fall 2017 Microgrant Recipients!

The Arts Administration Program (ARAD) at Teachers College, Columbia University is pleased to announce recipients of the Fall 2017 Microgrant for Student Professionalization.


Through the ARAD Microgrant Program and with generous support from the Arts and Humanities Department at Teachers College, ARAD proudly supports student professionalization activities on campus and beyond. This award champions special projects proposed by Teachers College student groups (with ARAD student membership), as well as conference attendance for individual students in the ARAD program.


Please join us in congratulating the following recipients on their Fall 2017 awards:



Tim Hausmann received his undergraduate degree in music theatre performance from Oklahoma City University. He then moved to New York City, where he spent six years working as an actor, singer, and dancer. After performing in the most recent Broadway revival and national tour of West Side Story, Tim decided to direct his passion for the arts into creating and advocating for meaningful performing arts experiences for others. His focus within arts administration is evaluation and assessment- specifically data-based arts advocacy and decision-making. He currently works in the research department at The Broadway League, the national trade association for the Broadway theatre industry.

The ARAD Microgrant will support Tim’s attendance at the American Evaluation Association’s “Evaluation 2017: From Learning to Action” conference. He will have the opportunity to not only meet and network with professionals working in the field of evaluation, but also to contextualize his evaluation skills and knowledge by attending professional development workshops.


Gillian Jakab Resized

Gillian Jakab grew up in Brooklyn. She graduated with High Distinction and Phi Beta Kappa from the Residential College of the University of Michigan in 2016, earning degrees in “Arts and Ideas in the Humanities” (an interdisciplinary history of the visual, performing, and literary arts) and in French. She has worked as editorial intern for the Lincoln Center Festival and her writing, which can be found at, has been published in The Brooklyn Rail and The Michigan Daily. In her graduate work, she hopes to focus on cultural policy and diplomacy.  Gillian believes the arts in general, and the performing arts in particular, are uniquely positioned to help bridge divides among cultural and political identities.

Funding from the ARAD Microgrant will support Gillian’s participation in the Congress on Research in Dance and the Society of Dance History Scholars Joint Conference, “Transmissions and Traces: Rendering Dance.” Gillian will be presenting a paper she wrote last semester on issues of cultural diplomacy in the Cold War.


MikesellJodi Mikesell graduated with honors from the University of Washington, where she obtained her Bachelor’s degree in Art History with a minor in Architecture. Her road to TC, Columbia University was a circuitous one with stops in costume design, event planning, art curation, accounting, and education. Before returning to school, she lived in Seattle and had worked for, Teatro Zinzanni, and The Northwest School of Art. Most recently, she has interned at the Baryshnikov Arts Center, where she helped to coordinate their annual visual art auction. She is currently the president of SAA (Student Advocates for the Arts), a TC student organization which helps build community among ARAD students and the greater NYC arts community, and empowers students to advocate for the importance of Art in America.

The ARAD Microgrant will support Jodi’s attendance at The Brooklyn Conference: Inspiring Social Change. There, she will be able to enhance her knowledge of where art and social change intersect and advance her goal to enact social change by leading, supporting, and working for organizations that prioritize social change through art within their missions.


Angelica Tran (1)​Angelica Tran graduated summa cum laude from Florida State University in 2012 with a degree in Music. Before joining the ARAD cohort, Angelica taught music in Orlando, Florida. Some of her experiences involved teaching general music in both public and private preschool and elementary schools, as well as teaching private clarinet lessons. During her spare time, she pursued volunteer opportunities with performing arts organizations in Orlando including Central Florida Community Arts and Orlando Shakespeare Theater, which helped her to develop a strong interest in arts administration. She hopes in the future to work for a performing arts organization where she can provide music opportunities that are accessible and affordable to all children.

The ARAD Microgrant will support Angelica’s participation in the DaCapo Professional Development Program for Performing Arts Management Students hosted by the Metropolitan Opera Guild. At this interactive conference, she will have the opportunity to learn about a wide variety of topics including community outreach, marketing, personnel and artist management, and other topics related to her studies.

Lauren Williams_Headshot

Lauren Williams  is from Richmond, Virginia. She attended the University of Virginia where she received her BA in New Media Design and Printmaking. Her undergraduate experience in visual arts translated into work as a full time Graphic Designer and Creative Manager supporting various industries including the arts, defense, and healthcare. She is interested in developing and utilizing art and design for positive social impact.

Funding from the ARAD Microgrant will support Lauren’s attendance at the Annual American Institute of Graphic Arts Design Conference in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Her participation will allow her to remain current on relevant topics within her artistic field, while also supporting her future goal of impacting society through social design.