2002 — student award of excellence
Jamie Rose is an international photojournalist based in Washington, D.C. In her career, she has worked in the Middle East, Africa, South America, Europe and many of the fifty states.
Jamie earned a Bachelor's Degree from American University and completed a Master's Degree in Visual Communications from Syracuse University.
Jamie currently covers politics and national news from Washington and around the country. Her true passion is working with nonprofits and photographing international humanitarian and health care related issues. She has worked on projects with The Global Fund, The Calvert Foundation, Doctors Without Borders and more.
Jamie holds credentials for the White House and the US Senate. She is a member of the White House News Photographers Association, National Press Photographers Association and Women Photojournalists of Washington.
Her editorial work is represented by Aurora Photos.
My project will continue the documentary photographic work I have begun in a three block area of East Fayette Street, a low socio-economic, inner city neighborhood, in Syracuse, New York. From the moment I moved to Syracuse, whenever I heard people speak of East Fayette Street and the housing projects therein, I heard horrible stories of guns, drugs and gang-related crimes in that neighborhood. Driving through the neighborhood past the small groups of loitering youths outside of the liquor store on the corner, I began to wonder. “who lives around here? What are the children like?” What goes on behind these closed doors?” In an endeavor to hone my skills as a community journalist, I began exploring and photographing East Fayette Street to see if I could discover the facts from urban legends.
Through my initial work on the East Fayette Street, I started to see a different community as the one described to me from ignorant, outside observers. While the drug dealing and gang activities are apparent. I have found a network of individuals who are working to better the community in which they live. Community service, active outreach and direct ministries abound on this street. However, the bad deeds of few make the front pages, while the hard work of many is overlooked. Through my initial work with the members of Sovereign Grace Baptist Church, Ferguson’s Barber Shop and the Boys and Girls Club of America, I have discovered individuals who are deeply committed to their community and are striving to bring about understanding and progress in a depressed area that has been all but forgotten by the city.
As seen in my photo story, my primary photographic work has focused on Clarissa Hobbs, a 17-year-old Boys and Girls Club employee. While carrying the normal workload of a high school senior, Clarissa also works 35 hours a week at the Boys and Girls Club as their “Smart Girls” program coordinator. She has been shuffled through the foster care system since she was two years old has every reason to be a statistic. Yet, Clarissa actively choses to spend six days a week mentoring young girls in her community instead of leading a typical, carefree high school girl’s life. She is just one of many heroes on East Fayette Street working to make a difference.
The East Fayette Street Project has now expanded to nine different locations. Instead of tackling such a large project alone and risk doing the project injustice, I invited eight other photojournalism students from Syracuse University to help tell the story of the community outreach on east Fayette Street. As the project director, I have been able to act as a photo editor, event planner, location coordinator and mentor to my fellow students. We are collectively photographing two churches who run soup kitchens and after school tutoring, two exemplary 5th grade school children who live in the housing projects, a low cost community health care center, a grandmother who is raising four of her grandchildren, a barber who ministers to the families of the neighborhood, and, of course, Clarissa of the Boys and Girls Club.
I firmly believe our photographic work can help to destroy the myths surrounding East Fayette Street and bring to light the outreach and service of this close-knit, giving community. With the help of the Alexia Foundation, I can continue photographing Clarissa while also mentoring those students who are working equally as hard to make this project a reality.
In the State of the Union address, President Bush called to Americans to commit two years to the service of our neighbors and our nation, station “Our country also needs citizens working to rebuild our communities. We need mentors to love children.” Even before hearing this call to service, the people of East Fayette Street have already looked adversity in the eye and refused to allow their community to fall into ruin. The people of East Fayette Street are working to bring about cultural understanding and striving to stop the cycle of violence and ignorance within their community. I hope the Alexia Foundation will help me in my endeavor to reward these heroes and commend their service to others.