Mass Cultural Council invited Katie Wyatt and Dalouge Smith to share a conversation around two different models of growing creative youth development programming at the city and state level for it’s Creative Youth Development blog, Seen & Heard. Continue reading “In Conversation: Katie Wyatt and Dalouge Smith”
We’re producing a year-long webinar series designed to increase understanding of CYD practice, build capacity, and advance the field.
The first three webinars are focused on CYD fundamentals. In the months ahead, we’ll be adding to this exciting line-up with deeper dives into the five imperatives of the CYD national policy agenda, including webinars on cross-sector collaboration, documenting and communicating impact, promoting youth leadership, and more. (Check out the CYD in Libraries webinars, too.)
This year, the Mass Cultural Council awarded 15 Amplify grants totaling $15,000 to projects designed and executed by young people in programs receiving YouthReach or SerHacer funding. Amplify shines a spotlight on the contributions these young people make to their communities by supporting them directly in creating and publicly sharing their work.
Booth, one of the foremost experts in the world on teaching artists, discusses the field and craft of teaching artistry. He says while teaching artists are recognized as learning catalysts – by the education, business, and healthcare sectors (to name a few) – there continue to be insufficient growth pathways to support the expertise that’s been developed by this global workforce.
The Mass Cultural Council and Klarman Family Foundation have launched a new program to help teaching artists improve the quality of their work with youth in schools and community settings across Massachusetts.
The Music Educators and Teaching Artists (META) Fellowship Pilot Program meets a growing need for high-quality, professional teaching in programs that employ the principles of creative youth development. With an initial focus on music, this two-year fellowship will help teaching artists develop the skills, relationships, and experiences they need to improve their practice. In turn, these artist educators will be better equipped to help their students grow as musicians and develop the cognitive and life skills they will need to thrive as adults.
“This project is a game changer. It is powerful and unique in a number of ways,” says Eric Booth, author and international authority on teaching artistry. “This can serve as a model for the rest of the country.”
Alchemy is a nonprofit organization in Akron, OH that provides a safe environment and sense of community to assist in the development of urban adolescents through the telling, discussion, and interpretation of mythological stories and fairy tales told to the beat of an African drum.
Since 2003, Alchemy has worked with over 2,000 male youth in its creative youth development programs. In 2012, they received the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award from the President’s Committee on the Arts & Humanities.
“Myths speak to archetypal situations, universal dilemmas,” said Kwame Scruggs, Executive Director of Alchemy, Inc. And, embedded in myths are guides to behavior that he believes can help counter some of the destructive images of masculinity that have taken root in some aspects of urban culture.
For the seven years that I have been in Alchemy, It has helped me grow from a boy to a man. The mythological stories we read and hear you can relate to everyday life. It helps you become a better decision maker to help you through hard times. It also connects you with other black males where I learn about their problems and we are able to help each other overcome obstacles. Alchemy is a great group of loyalty and brotherhood. – Marlon, Alchemy participant
I come, I listen, I share or say what I gotta say. I feel more open, because nothing leaves the circle. I’m something like a son, well, we all can say we are. But with no father figure in my life it seems like I had one when I come here and a lot of brothers so it taught me how to bond with people. So I come because it’s Alchemy. Love Kwame like a father.” – Dionte, Alchemy participant
Although personal development, rather than academic achievement, is the program’s chief goal, Alchemy’s techniques are also promoting academic success. Twenty-four of 28 members of its “first class” graduated from high school and went on to college. (And, of those 24 who enrolled in college, nine Alchemy alums have already graduated with their college degrees with 6 more alum on track to graduate by June 2018.)
In Finding the Gold Within, a feature-length documentary by Karina Epperlein, follow six young African American men, alumni of Alchemy’s program, as they enter college, determined to redefine society’s images and low expectations of them:
Over 30 representatives from federal agencies and national organizations attended the Creative Youth Development National Partnership’s briefing on the CYD field and Partnership on September 19 in Washington, D.C. Cross-sector partnership is vital to our efforts to build access and opportunities for young people to participate in CYD programs across the country. We are grateful for the rich dialogue and the advice and information shared by briefing participants from the National Endowment for the Arts, National Endowment for the Humanities, Institute of Museum and Library Services, Afterschool Alliance, U.S. Department of Justice, and National Assembly of State Arts Agencies.
Discussion on common areas of interest ranged from community development, connected learning, exposure of youth to violence and trauma, research on breaking the school-to-prison pipeline, heightened interest in social and emotional learning, equity and social justice, pathways to higher education, and potential areas of collaboration. The Partnership will continue to forge ties across sectors as a core strategy to increasing access for young people to quality CYD programs nationwide.
A new article, “The Rise of Creative Youth Development,” was recently published in the peer-reviewed journal Arts Education Policy Review (June 2016). Written by Denise Montgomery, Director of the Creative Youth Development National Initiative, this article describes core characteristics of creative youth development (CYD) programs and provides background on the origins and history of the field, including current advances and signs the field is coalescing. The article also describes CYD in the larger contexts of arts education and of education reform, and discusses policy, funding, and research needs and opportunities.
New Collective Impact Strategy to Strengthen Community-Based Organizations and Empower Practitioners & Youth
Today marks the formal launch of the Creative Youth Development National Partnership between the National Guild for Community Arts Education, Mass Cultural Council, The President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, and Americans for the Arts. These four organizations have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to formalize their joint commitment to advancing creative youth development (CYD) as a field of practice nationwide.
Creative youth development is a recently coined term that organizes a longstanding community of practice that intentionally integrates the arts, sciences, and humanities with youth development principles, sparking young people’s creativity, and building critical learning and life skills that carry into adulthood.
This new coalition is collaborating to organize and accelerate the CYD movement through a collective impact strategy with a common agenda, shared systems and activities, cross-sector engagement, and continuous communications. The Partnership aims to strengthen community-based organizations working in youth development and the arts, sciences, and humanities; develop and support adult practitioners in the field; and benefit youth by increasing access to CYD opportunities throughout the United States.
In 2014, representatives of the creative youth development field came together at the National Summit for Creative Youth Development to form its first-ever national agenda. The Creative Youth Development National Partnership has embraced a collective impact strategy to implement this agenda.
Since the 2014 Summit, each of the partner organizations in the Creative Youth Development National Partnership has continued to contribute to advancing the CYD field in a number of ways, as described in this progress report.
The Partnership is currently leading and advising these major projects, which have begun this summer:
- National Blueprint for Creative Youth Development – With support from the National Endowment for the Arts, this collective impact project works to advance cross-sector development of the CYD field and strengthen local and national partnerships. A national advisory group and a range of research activities will inform the Blueprint, which will seek to identify and prioritize actionable strategies for achieving shared goals to increase access to creative learning for American children and youth. Learn More.
- The Creative Youth Development Toolkit – The toolkit, set to launch in June 2018, will highlight relevant research on the CYD field and adjacent fields, illuminate effective practices for programmatic success, and provide tools and resources to drive forward the field of practice and the policies that support it. Learn more.
- www.CreativeYouthDevelopment.org – The web site, and associated newsletter, will provide unified communications that will foster information sharing, learning, knowledge development, collaboration, and input across the field.
- An NEA Art Works grant for $100,000 was awarded to the National Guild for Community Arts Education, on behalf of a coalition of national partners. The award will support a collective impact initiative and the creation of the first-ever blueprint to advance creative youth development.
Conference Presentations, Professional Development, and Networking
- The 2nd annual Creative Youth Development track at the Guild’s 2015 Conference for Community Arts Education in Philadelphia featured the keynote address, “A Love Note to Justice: Building Hope and Healing in Urban America, by Dr. Shawn Ginwright. (Guild members have access to the full video clip.) The track also featured a dozen breakout sessions, a dedicated roundtable, and site visits to Fleisher Art Memorial and Village of Arts and Humanities.
- Conference presentations at Americans for the Arts’ 2015 Conference – “Creative Youth Development: What’s in a Name?” featuring speakers Jeff Poulin, Jon Hinojosa, Erik Holmgren, and Traci Slater-Rigaud.
- In 2015, the Guild launched the Creative Youth Development Member Network, led by a nine member steering committee of CYD practitioners across the country. The Network is designed to foster engagement and promote communication among the Guild’s CYD members.
- CYD Member Network hosted the Twitter Chat, “#CYDChat: Where the Arts Connect and Contribute”
- Arts Education Partnership 2015 National Forum (Sept. 2015)
- Presentation of “The National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards Empowering Youth Through Creative Youth Development Webinar” on museum-, library-, and humanities programs. The webinar was presented by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities with partner agencies the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. (Oct. 2015)
- Guild’s Executive Director, Jonathan Herman, nominated to serve on the Boys and Girls Clubs of America Arts Advisory. The advisory group’s role is to provide expert council regarding best practices for providing high quality arts programs to youth.
- “Hope and Healing Book Club Video Chat” to discuss Dr. Shawn Ginwright’s book, Hope and Healing in Urban Education (January 2016)
- Reframing El Sistema conference in Baltimore (April 2016) – “Re-Defining Sustainability for Socially Driven Arts Programs” featuring speakers Jeff Poulin, Dan Trahey, and Phil Bravo.
- Guild’s CYD Member Network in collaboration with MindPop and Creative Action ( Austin, TX) and SAY Sí (San Antonio, TX) presented a workshop at Creative Action for over 40 local arts education leaders to discuss the CYD movement, observable qualities of effective CYD programs, and how to sustain programs on an ongoing basis (May 2016)
- Conference presentations at Americans for the Arts’ 2016 Conference – “The Future of Creative Youth Development” featuring speakers Robyne Walker Murphy, Zakiya Thomas, and 2 students.
- Co-Commissioned the article, “The Rise of Creative Youth Development,” published in the Arts Education Policy Review Journal (June 2016); written by Denise Montgomery.
- creativeyouthdevelopment.org launched as web presence for the National Partnership
- Americans for the Arts’ webinar: “Creative Youth Development – What You Need to Know“
- NEA’s Arts Education Webinar: The Past, Current and Future Needs of Youth Arts Organizations Using Data to Inform Program Impact
- American’s for the Arts’ ARTSblog featured a salon on CYD.
- Compendium of Key CYD Research Resources on Guild Website.