Sunday, February 1, 2015

Philly ARTrepreneurs wins SEED Grant

This week, I showed a presentation to the Philly CORE Leaders in City Hall's City Council Caucus room. I talked about my student artists at Memphis Street Academy Charter School and did a 3-minute pitch for a program called Philly ARTrepreneurs.

Philly ARTrepreneurs is an idea I've had for the kids since I started teaching at Memphis Street when we started the school in 2012. Memphis is a turnaround school that used to be called John Paul Jones Middle School. The kids there have grown so much. The academic and behavioral progress they have made is mind-blowing. My students are my heroes. I say it all the time. 

When I show them my work, my t-shirt designs, comics, anthologies, and art for shows, they always ask me how they can do it too. Now with this SEED grant, I will be able to show them. In the next few months, we will be outfitting my art room with professional equipment and programs so I can show students how to design their own shirts and create their own books and prints. I will also teach students about marketing and shipping their creations. 

The proceeds from the products sold will be split three ways - 1/3 will go to a charity of the student designer's choice. 1/3 will go to the student in some form of scholarship. 1/3 will fold back into the ARTrepreneurs program to keep it moving forward for other students.

I am blessed every day to have this job and work with these kids. I can't wait to walk them through this experience of getting their work out into the world to a wide audience. Please stay tuned for updates over the next few months.

Please CLICK HERE to read the Newsworks article regarding the SEED 4.0 event.