I have only one word to describe the students who applied to be a part of the Center’s second Youth Advisory Council…AMAZING! CCA staff, Chandler Cultural Foundation board members and graduates from last year’s Youth Advisory Council (or as staff refers to them…the YAC’s) interviewed the candidates and narrowed it down to the top 15. With so many talented candidates, that was extremely challenging!
The 15 students selected applied from all over the East Valley from multiple schools and districts. You will get to meet each of them in future blogs and if you thought teens were only interested in hanging out at the mall, PlayStations and iPhones…think again.
The Youth Advisory Council’s program objectives are to focus on Arts Appreciation, Community Service and Leadership Skills in order to become advocates for the arts and well rounded community leaders. They will be engaged in experiential 3-hour sessions from September – February that will provide hands-on real world leadership situations of a Performing Arts Center. Teens will complete the program with increased knowledge of: career opportunities, financial responsibility, leadership skills, small and large group dynamics and public relations and marketing. This program is free of charge to all participants and a Certificate of Completion will be given to each teen at the conclusion of the program year. Council members are 13-18 years of age and are currently attending a public, private, parochial, charter, or home schools in Chandler and from schools in surrounding cities.
The YAC’s met for the first time on September 19 where they were introduced to CCA staff. They toured the Center and got to know each other by sharing what they wanted to get out of the program. They first and foremost wanted to have fun; build lifelong friendships; develop their leadership skills; and to be actively involved after their term was over (and they want to eat during their sessions!)
Last night their session focused on defining the arts and what is considered art. They also had a panel discussion on “Why the arts are important”. Guest panelists included Bob Booker, Executive Director, Arizona Commission on the Arts; Salley Garrison, Front of House Coordinator, Tempe Art Center; Janet Langley, VP Organizational Effectiveness, Gateway Community College; Ally Haynes-Hamble, Assistant Director, Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts; Larry Whitesell, Manager, Higley Center for the Performing Arts; Jimmie Byrd, Production Coordinator, Chandler Center for the Arts; and Michelle MacLennan, Assistant Manager, Chandler Center for the Arts.
The YAC’s assignment for next week is to come up with some fundraising ideas for the fundraising event they will be doing later in the year. The session topic for next week will be on understanding what makes a not-for-profit organization different and Money, Money, Money!
Read about what happened next Thursday, Oct. 25!