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  • Home / Academics / NEH



    Apply Now Visit Ursuline Find a Program Request Info

    Cleveland Divided: Rust Belt Revival

    Chart a path through the core curriculum that allows you to become a cultural problem solver in the Rust Belt region. 

    The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) awarded a grant to Ursuline College to host a NEH Summer Institute for higher education faculty. This June 2023 seminar, “Reading, Writing, and Teaching the Rust Belt: Co-creating Regional Humanities Ecosystems,” will bring 25 national scholars to Cleveland and the Ursuline campus to discover the best teaching practices for sharing the story of the Rust Belt.


    The Rust Belt region is known as a place of poverty, discrimination, neglect, and population decline. Cleveland – a prototypical Rust Belt city – and its inner-ring suburbs include an array of distinct neighborhoods that are historically divided by ethnicity, race, and socioeconomic status. But, Cleveland’s story is far from finished. As an Ursuline student, you are the citizens who will help write the next chapter of Rust Belt revival. Utilizing NEH funding, Ursuline has created a pathway through the core curriculum – one that focuses on the Rust Belt, social solutions, and reimagining the humanities. The courses emphasize digital skills, mapping, and storytelling to analyze the history of the region. The course pathway gives you the intellectual framework to engage locally with the community as problem-solvers and critical thinkers in Cleveland’s specific cultural context.

    Watch the video above to hear an overview of our grant activities. 

    Image of Cleveland Ohio rust belt

    From Rust Belt to Revival

    Learn more about the grant and learn how you can navigate the Rust Belt with this new pathway.


    Pathway Through the Core Curriculum

    Learn how this material threads its way through our core curriculum and how you can earn a certificate by completing the Rust Belt Pathway. 


    #ReadingtheRustBelt: Recommended Reading List

    Learn more about what we studied and read over the past year, and download a reading list for yourself here:


    Student Survey

    Help us shape this project. Please complete this short survey. 


    Ursuline College english students in class on campus

    Student Gallery

    Submit your Rust Belt Revival work to be featured on this website.

    Rust Belt Revival Videos

    HiP 355 and Rustbelt Revival

    HiP 355 and Rustbelt Revival

    Chart your way through the Rust Belt Revival pathway with a course in Historic Preservation with Dr. Bari Oyler Stith.

    Rust Belt Revival - Rachel Deblinger, Community Partner

    Rust Belt Revival - Rachel Deblinger, Community Partner

    Rachel Deblinger, Director of the Modern Endangered Archives Program at the UCLA Library

    Anisfield Wolf group 1

    Anisfield Wolf group 1

    In celebration of Cleveland Book Week, Ursuline students read from and react to Tracy K. Smith's poem, "Declaration." Smith...

    Rustbelt Revival Planning

    Rustbelt Revival Planning

    Brief description of the tangible results of Dr. Pamela McVay's work with the Rustbelt Revival planning grant.

    AR 112 and the Rust Belt Revival

    AR 112 and the Rust Belt Revival

    Sr. Rosaria talks about how AR 112 (Digital Photography) fits in with the Rust Belt Revival pathway through the core curriculum.

    Bioethics and Rust Belt Revival

    Bioethics and Rust Belt Revival

    Chart your way through the Rust Belt Revival pathway with a course in Bioethics with Jacob Waldenmaier.

    Abdullah Alfadhel Rust Best Project

    Abdullah Alfadhel Rust Best Project

    Ursuline College senior nursing student, Abdullah Alfadhel, discusses Rust Belt Revival photography.

    Elizabeth Kavran discusses Rust Belt Revival

    Elizabeth Kavran discusses Rust Belt Revival

    Dean Elizabeth Kavran discusses Ursuline College's Rust Belt Revival

    Community Partners

    Amy Sheon Executive Director of the Urban Health Initiative at the School of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University

    Eric Dillenbeck Executive Director of Heights Community Congress

    Karen Long Director of the Anisfield-Wolf Book Awards

    Anne Trubek Founder of Belt Publishing / Belt Magazine

    Rachel Deblinger Digital Humanities Consultant

    Moya Bailey Digital Humanities Consultant

    Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in Ursuline’s project do not necessarily represent those of the National Endowment for the Humanities.

    About the National Endowment for the Humanities – Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at:

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