50 STORIES 50 YEARS: THE GODDARD CENTER
The Goddard Center serves as a beacon of creativity throughout south central Oklahoma and as a symbol of its lively, inventive communities. The center’s hands-on art classes serve diverse populations of all ages and particularly assist rural public schools in meeting the State’s Standards for Fine Arts.
Among the counties the Goddard Center serves are two of Oklahoma’s lowest ranking counties in terms of household income and health, Jefferson and Johnston – counties and cities whose school systems would not be able to serve their students in meeting the State’s fine arts standards without the work of the Goddard Center.
While educating the future workforce, the Goddard Center also serves to draw people to south central Oklahoma’s current workforce. Major employers in the region use the center’s class schedules and promotional materials in their recruitment process. The Goddard Center provides a strong draw to south central Oklahoma as a crucial part of the vibrant economy that potential employees would be joining.
The Oklahoma Arts Council’s Arts Learning in Communities program provides important support to keep class fees low and access to classes high. Without these monies, class offerings would decrease, the Goddard Center would be unable to serve rural public schools as thoroughly, it’s role in the south central Oklahoma economy would diminish, and local employers would see one of their strongest cultural selling points dwindle.
This story celebrates 50 years of the Oklahoma Arts Council and how the state’s investments have positive ripple effects on communities across Oklahoma. See other stories or follow this link for more information.