Teeko Yang is taking a break. Sort of. After graduating from the Master of Professional Studies in Arts and Cultural Leadership, Yang headed overseas for an apprenticeship in London to learn about placemaking and community development.
Yang previously served as Partner and Outreach Coordinator at Northern Lights.mn, a collaborative arts organization that creates spaces with and for artists, audiences, and partners to engage with innovative art and technology. Prior to that, she led the Creative Placemaking Initiative at the Asian Economic Development Association.
“I believe that building relationships and cultivating knowledge outside of your normal environment will lead to more opportunities and positive challenges for your growth and development.”
Born in North Minneapolis, Yang's family moved to Rose, OK, when she was young. She earned a BFA from the University of Oklahoma with a focus in photography. “I worked for multiple organizations during my undergrad and developed a love for organizations that catalyzed arts and culture for social change.”
Yang returned to the Twin Cities in 2014 for graduate school. “I came to the ACL program because of my interest in arts and culture, and to rebuild my connections with my former communities.”
The ACL degree allowed her to take course work that explored a combination of arts, culture, place, and entrepreneurship. “I was able to access the classes, resources, and relationships that I need to build and support my interest.”
“The challenge I encountered,” she says, “was learning how to manage my energy between school, work, friends, family, and freelance projects along the way. Also, learning how to say no.”
Yang will return to the US shortly and begin her new role as project manager at Northern Lights.mn. In work as in life, she aims to continue to “make more connections on a global scale” by pushing beyond her comfort zone.
Favorite Class: Nonprofit Management and Governance with Melissa Stone
Advice for Future Students: “Self care is vital. Take time to reflect and process when major assignments are finished and projects are done.”