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MC's West receives Spirit of Grace Award

Barry McNamara
Janeve West, assistant professor of theatre at Monmouth College, was awarded the Buchanan Center for the Arts’ annual Spirit of Grace Award earlier this month. The award is presented to an individual who has done a significant amount of work for arts in Monmouth.

“Janeve has certainly done a lot for arts in our community,” said BCA director Susan Twomey. “She’s really helped with the partnership between Monmouth College and the Buchanan Center, and she has particularly done outstanding work with children’s theatre.”

Twomey called those efforts a “win-win.” The theatre classes and workshops bring parents and children to the center, increasing traffic. The children win, she said, by gaining “greater self-esteem, greater self-worth and improved public speaking and teamwork skills. … I’ve personally witnessed the transformation that these children experience through theatre, as their social skills and confidence improves. Those kinds of changes are happening here all the time.”

West, who joined the Monmouth faculty in 2006, is also a driving force behind the arts on campus, tirelessly promoting the college’s “Seriously Creative” approach to the fine arts.

“Janeve’s energy and creative spirit are a huge asset to our community,” concluded Twomey.

The Spirit of Grace Award is named for Grace Buchanan, benefactor of the center, which opened in downtown Monmouth in 1989 and features a 2,400-sqaure-foot exhibit space, a gift shop and a large studio for classes, meetings and other arts-related and community events.