News Release

Dhokai receives funding for George Mason University’s Veterans and the Arts Initiative

Grant and Award Announcement

George Mason University

Niyati Dhokai, Research Associate Professor, College of Visual and Performing Arts (CVPA), received funding for a hybrid ukulele series for the military-connected community. In addition to Dhokai, Hylton Performing Arts Center staff, including Rick Davis, Executive Director of the Hylton Center; Glen McCarthy, Veterans and the Arts Initiative instructor; Adiza Jibril, Veterans and the Arts Initiative instructor and intern; Emily Fasick, Program Assistant for the Veterans and the Arts Initiative; Tionge Johnson, Marketing Assistant for the Veterans and the Arts Initiative; and Kevin Smith, Technical Director at the Hylton Center are supporting this effort.

“At this stage in the COVID-19 pandemic, hybrid workshops provide an opportunity for our military-connected community to safely access community arts program in a way that is best for them – virtually or in-person at the Hylton Center. Initial feedback from our community reveals that they are seeking activities to participate in with their families and to develop their musical skills,” says Dhokai. 

Dhokai received a $73,650 contract through Creative Forces®: The National Endowment for the Arts Military Healing Arts Network for this project.  Creative Forces®: NEA Military Healing Arts Network is an initiative of the National Endowment for the Arts in partnership with the U.S. Departments of Defense and Veterans Affairs that seeks to improve the health, well-being, and quality of life for military and Veteran populations exposed to trauma, as well as their families and caregivers. Creative Forces is managed in partnership with Americans for the Arts, the Henry M. Jackson Foundation for the Advancement of Military Medicine, and Mid-America Arts Alliance.

Funding began in September 2021 and will end in late December 2021.


About George Mason University

George Mason University is Virginia's largest public research university. Located near Washington, D.C., Mason enrolls 38,000 students from 130 countries and all 50 states. Mason has grown rapidly over the last half-century and is recognized for its innovation and entrepreneurship, remarkable diversity and commitment to accessibility. Learn more at


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