Award Date


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Education (EdD)


Educational Leadership

First Committee Member

Dale Andersen

Number of Pages



There are at least 200 gangs in Southern Nevada with more than 7,700 identified members. "Gang bangers" do not anticipate a future or invest in "dreams," most do not expect to live beyond their 20's. Las Vegas is more the rule than the exception; the West Las Vegas community is the epicenter needing attention. The planning and development of this pilot program "The Performing and Visual Arts Camp for Kids" focused on teaching life skills and character development, such as getting along with others, respect for oneself and others, initiative, the ability to communicate, problem solving, perseverance, and goal setting through an integration of a multidisciplinary cultural and performing arts program. The arts were tools used to promote healthy living through the exercise of life skills interventions practiced daily in an interim of an eight-week study. The arts curriculum encouraged at-risk students 10 to 15 years of age to participate in five (5) artistic disciplines: Dance (African, Ballet, Tap, Modern, Hip-Hop); Music (African Conga/Steel Drums, Choir); Theatre Arts/Drama (Creative Writing); Film and Video Production; and Visual Arts. The camp participants presented a final musical theater production with all seventy students, executing performance and leadership skills developed in the camp's workshops. Recent research correlates evidence that one positive outcome of high academic performance in students is directly linked to their good habits and good character; The purpose of this study was to conduct and report a formal evaluation of the Year 2001 Camp for Kids and study the development impact it had on youth living in West Las Vegas, making this program responsive to the needs of low/moderate income families during non school hours. The study investigated the Summer Camp for Kids Program to gain knowledge of what effect it had on students' life skills, self esteem, persistence/responsibility, and decision-making via the arts.


Arts; Effects; Las Vegas; Life; Life Skills; Nevada; Skills; Socialization; Strategies; Teaching; Vegas; West; Youth

Controlled Subject

Education, Higher; Ethnology

File Format


File Size

3696.64 KB

Degree Grantor

University of Nevada, Las Vegas




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