Elzey Mercer was invited to participate in the Community Research Cooperative: Methodologies for Research Justice research cluster as a faculty co-lead.

The cooperative was developed by Dr. Anita Say Chan (Associate Professor in the School of Information Sciences and Department of Media and Cinema Studies). The Community Research Cooperative’s Technology Fellows Program funded 4 local community-based technology projects dedicated to social justice work in Champaign County with $5,000 grants. Fellows were also supported by a semester-long mentorship program and a workshop series led by local community leaders on Working with At-risk Youth, to Trauma-informed methods to Backpocket Media Production. 

As a team, we aimed to break down the power hierarchy in the cooperative space and learn from one another. The times we spend learning together and from each other purposefully break down the researcher–researched relationship and create a purposeful space for team and community building.