Representative Nita Lowey

Representing the 17th District of New York

Lowey Announces $250,000 for Pleasantville Education Organization

April 19, 2017
Press Release

Grant will be used to create online resources for students on preserving cultural heritage around the world

Pleasantville, NY – Congresswoman Nita M. Lowey (D-Rockland/Westchester), Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, today announced $250,000 in National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) funds for Smarthistory in Pleasantville to produce 44 videos and six framing essays on the importance of preserving endangered cultural heritage.

“When students explore shared histories and cultures, it brings diverse communities from around the globe together,” said Lowey. “These federal funds will allow millions of people in New York and across the country to access rich and engaging educational resources on endangered cultural sites and heritage. As Ranking Member of the House Appropriations Committee, I will continue fighting to expand investments in the arts and humanities, and provide more opportunities for young Americans to explore the history of the world around them.”

This $250,000 grant will be used to complete the At Risk Cultural Heritage Education Series (ARCHES), a new collection of online content tracing a comprehensive introduction to the preservation of cultural heritage worldwide. These 44 videos and six essays will explore the monuments, sites, and objects that define our shared humanity and which are being lost at an unprecedented rate. ARCHES will go beyond the news headlines describing the most dramatic acts of destruction to provide high quality, engaging, and in-depth information to students, educators, and the general public. 

“Smarthistory is absolutely delighted and grateful to the National Endowment for the Humanities for supporting the humanities in communities across the nation, large and small,” said Steve Zucker, Co-Founder and Executive Director for Smarthistory. “This grant will make possible the creation of learning resources about endangered cultural heritage on the Smarthistory platform that will be available for free and without advertising to learners around the United States. The National Endowment for the Humanities provides essential support for research and public outreach in the humanities and makes the United States a leader in education.”

Smarthistory is an online educational resource for art and cultural history. Since 2005, Smarthistory has produced accessible, conversational videos and essays to help students, educators, and the general public more easily understand art and culture from around the world.

Congresswoman Lowey is a staunch supporter of the NEH and has long fought to expand investments in the Endowment. The NEH is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States, and it serves and strengthens our country by promoting excellence in the humanities and conveying the lessons of history to all Americans. The Endowment accomplishes its mission by awarding grants for top-rated proposals examined by panels of independent, external reviewers. President Trump’s proposed budget would eliminate the NEH, jeopardizing critical federal investments that enrich the culture and economy of the Lower Hudson Valley.