Alumni Mislav and Ema Use Art for Positive Social Change
Meet Mislav and Ema, former RIT Croatia students who share a passion for using art as a motivation for positive change
Established in 2012 in Zagreb, inart arts association is a pioneering organization dedicated to creating and implementing inclusive art education programs. Their bilingual initiatives aim to foster unity, nurture personal creativity, and challenge societal norms. With a commitment to inclusivity, they have engaged more than 1,000 participants across a broad spectrum of ages, ranging from 5 to 80 years. Through collaborations with emerging talents and experienced professionals, inart continues to profoundly impact the community.
Meet Mislav and Ema, RIT Croatia alumni, whose dedication to the nonprofit sector has driven the inart's remarkable journey. After graduating from RIT Croatia in International Business in 2020 and pursuing their Master's degrees in Rural Development and Natural Resource Management in Sweden, their commitment to using art as a force for positive social change has led to numerous impactful projects.
Introduction and Creation of inart
Q: Tell us a bit about yourself, i.e. how do you want us to present you, when you graduated, etc.
Mislav Petrušić: We are Mislav and Ema, RIT Croatia alumni. We graduated in International Business in 2020 after which we continued our studies in Sweden where we got our Master's degrees in Rural development and natural resource management. After finishing our masters we were sure we wanted to be in a non-profit sector and have a positive impact on society, so we joined forces with an established organization, International Arts Center and have been working on developing it.
Q: How did you come up with the idea to establish the inart arts association?
Mislav Petrušić: Inart is the combination of arts and a passion for a better society. In a world where we can often feel alone and overwhelmed by expectations, art can provide us with catharsis and relief. Art is the language that everyone can understand, so we want to empower people with artistic language through which they can understand and discuss social topics and dilemmas and express their ideas and opinions.
Educational Journey and its Influence on inart's Mission
Q: What did your career path look like after RIT Croatia?
Mislav Petrušić: Following our studies in Sweden we both started our careers in the non-profit sector. Ema is doing marketing for inart while I am taking care of the finances. Both of us are writing EU projects for the organization which is based on artivism (combining arts and activism). So far we’ve written projects on migration, food and voting while we have also had the pleasure to work on projects where we have helped young people promote tourism, sustainability, tolerance, and inclusion as well as help older people deal with social isolation in times of Covid.
Q: How has your education at RIT Croatia helped you in the idea and realization of inart?
Mislav Petrušić: RIT Croatia equipped us with amazing marketing, management and financial skills crucial for any industry, including non-profit. The business logic applies to NGOs and NPOs almost in the same way as it does to companies and corporations. We regularly work on creating marketing plans, budgets, and financial predictions, and need to constantly consider our business strategies and market position.
Impact and Significance of inart's Work
Q: What would you highlight in the work of inart?
Mislav Petrušić: It is the most rewarding thing to do something you love and are interested in and that’s exactly what inart offers us. We believe we are doing something meaningful for the world we are living in and that will never stop motivating us to work harder and better every day.
Q: Do you have a project you are most proud of?
Mislav Petrušić: Every project that we work on we give our full energy into. We can’t say that there is any one specific project that we are most proud of, but we can say that our favorite thing is that moment when we see that our work has inspired others to be better people and to really take action to make society better. Sometimes people who want to do good can feel alone in their optimism, our organization is that friend that pats you on the shoulder and tells you that you are in fact incredible and that you can do it.
Empowering Student Development through Workshops
Q: How can the content of your workshops help students in their development?
Mislav Petrušić: With inart, you can be an artist, an activist and become part of a community of artist-activists. If we could describe our classes with three words they would be: creativity, fun, and friendship. With us, you can harness your imagination, find your voice, meet amazing people, live through incredible experiences and always leave with a smile and a story to tell.
With us, students can develop their public speaking confidence and skills, they can learn how to navigate unpredictable situations through improvisation, learning to keep their cool and to react to others. Students can learn how to communicate with better resolve and confidence, how to be more convincing and how to lead social interactions to their benefit. Students can likewise develop a clear understanding of key social issues, a better understanding of the needs of others.
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