Monica Harriss

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Monica Harriss is the Youth Programs Manager at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum. Monica has a Bachelor of Architecture from Pratt and a Masters in Science from Hunter College. She has taught several design workshops over the past seven years, including DesignPrep, and City of Neighborhoods.

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In various capacities at Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, the Office of Assembly Member Jonathan Bing and the United Nations Counselor Corps and Protocol, Monica Harriss has acquired skills in all phases of programming and outreach including developing, managing and implementing design-oriented programs for K-12.

Her current role as the Youth Programs Manager at Cooper-Hewitt includes but is not limited to the oversight of logistics that support the implementation of programmatic activities relating to design practice and theory for all aspects of DesignPrep, an after-school education program for grades 9-12. She works closely with teens through DesignPrep as well as the annual Teen Design Fair which serves over 850 teens throughout New York, NY and Washington, DC. She has overseen nearly $1,000,000 in grants which have enabled Monica to develop programs that explore the important role the design process plays in enhancing students’ basic skills and in exposing them to design-related career fields.

Monica is the founder of Women-in-Design, a youth program for underprivileged females in need of a viable career path. She brought this program to the Office of Assembly Member Jonathan Bing, a member of the New York State Assembly’s Arts and Tourism Committee, and implemented the workshop at Stanley Isaacs Neighborhood Center, a low-income housing settlement in his district. She was able to expand outreach through the Cooper-Hewitt by providing youth access to career paths in art and design. She used my oral and written knowledge of Spanish to provide assistance to students who would otherwise have been unable to participate in the program.

Over a decade of working with world-renowned firms, such as Perkins Eastman Architects and Pelli Clark Pelli as well as researching architecture and sustainability at Yale, Oxford, and Hunter has led to numerous relationships and contacts in the field of art and design. Monica has leveraged these relationships to consistently provide students with internship placement, studio visits, and mentorship opportunities.

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