design education

Education as Economic Development

The third largest job producer in the state of Arkansas is the Creative Economy. However, rural populations have an extremely hard time when it comes to recruiting and keeping its art and design teachers not to mention creative individuals in general. What that means for communities like Helena, Arkansas is that our students have less access to a knowledge base that at the very least can provide food on the table, and take them to college to build a career.

We believe that youth can make a great impact on the revitalization of our city. Since launching our Design Mentorship Program in 2015, we have learned that we can achieve our mission by equipping youth with the tools necessary to improve their community. Our program serves the needs of our youth today while also laying the groundwork to stop rural population loss—perhaps even reverse it.


  1. Equip Youth With Leadership Attitudes /// Teach our students to utilize the design process as a way to tackle community challenges with the goal of making a positive, lasting impact.

  2. Expose Youth To Creative Opportunities /// Provide our students with access to the latest creative industry technologies, helping them access wider-ranging opportunities when it comes to college and career pathways.

  3. Encourage Youth though Mentorship /// Lead our students through mentorship, encouraging personal as well as academic growth.


After School Design Workshops

Beginning in Fall of 2019 Thrive will begin offering fun and engaging design workshops to area 4th-8th graders of neighboring school districts and educational communities.


Design Apprenticeship

Thrive leads a community service-learning, design apprenticeship to Juniors and Seniors from area schools and educational communities.


If you would like to know more about what Thrive has to offer school districts, send us an email!