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Each year, New Bedford Whaling Museum has invited students to engage with Lighting the Way: Historic Women of the SouthCoast by creating original works inspired by the women featured on this website. Between 2019 and 2023, 92 young people in grades 4 through 12 have submitted spoken word pieces, drawings, paintings, and collages. Collectively, the artworks submitted have reflected the diversity of both historic women and today’s young people from our region. In the artworks, one can see the echoes of leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, and activists who shaped the SouthCoast as we know it today. In each, one sees the reflection of students’ passions and interests, as well as their artistry, attention to detail, craftsmanship, and individuality.

The 2023 IGNITE Showcase was on display at New Bedford Whaling Museum, March 4 – 26, 2023. View the artworks in the slideshow at the top of the page.

To see images from 2020: visit the IGNITE 2020 page.

To see images from 2021: watch the IGNITE 2021 video.

To see images from 2022: visit the IGNITE 2022 page.

Read this article about the showcase: IGNITE and engage during AHA! New Bedford, New Bedford Creative, March 6, 2023

Hey Teachers!

Participation in the Ignite Youth Artist Showcase project can provide students opportunities to engage with several of the Guiding Principles and standards for the Massachusetts Digital Literacy & Computer Science, English Language Arts & Literacy, and History & Social Science Frameworks. View examples here.



This program is supported in part by a grant from the New Bedford Cultural Council, a local agency, which is supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.

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