Beyond The Classroom: Musical Theatre, RTF Double Major Shows Support For the Filipinx Community by Organizing a Talent Showcase For Charity

Stock image of a microphone
Faith sitting and posing on the edge of a fountain.

Today, we speak to Faith Lynn Diccion, a junior Musical Theatre and Radio/ TV/ Film double major from Egg Harbor Township, NJ (Atlantic County). She currently lives on campus in the Rowan Boulevard Apartments. She tells us more about her work this past summer with the nonprofit organization EmbraceRace and how she put together a Filipinx talent showcase for charity.

First, how did you find Rowan?

I found Rowan after being scouted at the NJ Thespian Festival by one of the theatre professors my senior year of high school. I had never really thought about Rowan as a theatre school, but I was instantly captivated by the faculty and campus. So, I was eager to come and audition at the school.

Why did you choose your major?

Growing up, I loved participating in theatre productions and singing. I just found it natural to pursue what I loved as a kid in college. Watching Disney movies when I was younger also left a big impression on me and gave me a push toward a career in performance and art creation.

What is EmbraceRace? How did you get involved?

EmbraceRace is a nonprofit organization that provides resources to parents, teachers and all in order to help raise children in a community based on acceptance, understanding and equity. From March 2016-2020, EmbraceRace has published 170+ articles from many storytellers, 34 Talking Kids & Race webinars with over 9K registrants per session, 30K+ email subscribers and 90K+ Facebook fans, and partnerships with well-known organizations such as The American Psychological Association and The Prejudice and Intergroup Relations Lab at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

I happened to stumble upon EmbraceRace’s website while researching for organizations to donate to for my final project with the DIAL National Fellowship with Metro Arts Nashville under Americans for the Arts.

At the time, I was brainstorming ideas for what causes I was most interested in supporting. In light of the surge in BLM protests and rallies, I wanted to show my support as well. Also, the slogan for EmbraceRace is “Raising a Brave Generation.” It really resonated within me and further strengthened my resolve to donate.

I organized this showcase to show support not only for my Filipinx community and heritage, but also for the BLM movement that paved the way for all of the following minorities to come to America.

How did you go about finding the talent for the showcase?

Finding the talent was super fun. All I had to do was reach out to my network of friends and acquaintances to see who would be interested in participating, and it all just happened to work out somehow. Some of the talents I know very well, and some of them I had never even met before. Still, we are all connected to each other. So it was really uplifting to be able to reach out to these wonderful performers and ask them to share their talents for a special cause.

A social media flyer for the Filipinx Talent Showcase.
Featured performers from the Sa Bahay (“At Home”) musical showcase.

What was a typical day like working with EmbraceRace?

Because this was an individual project under my Fellowship, I did not work exclusively with EmbraceRace to accomplish this. When the fundraising timeframe ends, I will personally send the money raised as a one-time donation on the EmbraceRace website. As of [early September], our goal of $500 has been met. But because we are still accepting donations, we are still receiving donations and have exceeded our goal by a substantial amount.

Any advice to students looking to get involved with EmbraceRace or advice in general?

Browsing their official website is a great place to start. They even have volunteer opportunities available for people looking for more active roles in the organization. Also, their donation button has options to either donate as an individual or set-up up a fundraiser. The individual donation option fit the best with my showcase’s structure, so I opted out of creating a fundraiser directly though the organization. All in all, EmbraceRace is a wonderful nonprofit with useful resources and a great community open to discussion, so I highly recommend checking them out!

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Story by:
Bianca Torres, senior music industry major

Photos provided by:
Faith Lynn Diccion, musical theatre and RTF double major

Header photo courtesy of:
Unsplash

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