Thursday, July 14, 2011

Arts Commission of Greater Toledo Announces 2011 YAAWTM Program


The Arts Commission of Greater Toledo (ACGT) is pleased to announce that the 2011 Young Artists At Work (YAAW) Program is currently underway.  Our organization is very thankful to hold our program in the University of Toledo’s Center for Visual Arts facility, located in the Frank Gehry Building attached to the Toledo Museum of Art, again for a second year.  Names and schools of this year’s YAAW apprentices are included at the end of the release.

Since 1994, ACGT has presented the award winning Young Artists at Work (YAAW) program.  This six-week summer employment opportunity enables diverse and at-risk youth to benefit from an intense exposure to the arts.  Student apprentices between the ages of 14 and 18 were selected in a competitive process for 6 weeks of summer employment as working artists.  The objective of YAAW is to provide an intensive arts experience that fosters artistic self-expression and a quality work ethic that can impact the youth throughout adulthood.  The program encourages expression, refinement, cross-cultural sharing, and the exchange of ideas.  The opportunity provides exposure to the concept of art as a business, as well as the creation of public art for the greater Toledo community.

The apprentices in this year’s program include 57 students representing more than 27 area high schools, including private, parochial, charter, and public schools.  The 2011 YAAW apprentices will work on a number of projects this summer under the mentorship of talented local artists and art educators.  The larger and more community-oriented projects include the painting of public murals for a Toledo GROWs community garden and the Lucas County Juvenile Justice Center, along with muraled park benches to find permanent locations in the Old West End neighborhood. The apprentices are also participating in writing workshops to create poetry that will be featured on transit buses for the Art in TARTA program.  These buses also feature design work from graphic design students at Bowling Green State University, and will be unveiled in December.  

Even the first three weeks of the program have incited growth and inspiration for both the apprentices and art instruction staff alike.

The 2011 YAAW Coordinator, Jimmy McGhee, said of the young artists that the program has employed for this summer: “I find this year’s apprentices to be excited, talented and very passionate about art and the experience they have already begun”.

Assistant Instructor Alexis Lyman is enjoying her first year working as staff in the program.  She admits:  “I think I am learning more from these kids than they are learning from me!”

YAAW Apprentice Hasaan Hunter, age 18, describes: “The YAAW program is something that I have never experienced before, and I am having an awesome time as I progress”.

YAAW Apprentice Hannah Skowronek, age 18, enjoys working at YAAW: “I feel like I am the luckiest girl in the world, because I get paid to do what I love.  What the Arts Commission of Greater Toledo does is very important to the community, and I am so excited to be a part of that”.

YAAW Apprentice Caroline Jardine, age 17, was an apprentice in YAAW in 2010 as well.  She exclaims: “I absolutely LOVE working at YAAW.  YAAW is an environment where creativity is embraced.  YAAW is a place where people from all different backgrounds use their talents to create artwork that beautifies Toledo. YAAW is definitely a place to grow”.

The press is invited to tour the 2011 YAAW site during the three remaining weeks of the program.  The last date the program will be in session if Friday, August 5, 2011.  To schedule an interview or tour, please contact Michelle Carlson at 419-254-ARTS (2787) or via email, at

This year’s apprentices are:
Colin Amos (Toledo School for the Arts), Kia Awls (Start High School), Kelly Barfield (Ottawa Hills High School), Karen Becerra (Waite High School), Christopher Bradford II (Summit Academy), Brooke Breckenridge (Perrysburg High School), Michael Burgete (Phoenix Academy), Jason Burgete (Phoenix Academy),Brandi Cabell (Start High School), Chelsie Cree (Bowsher High School), Jenna Daugherty (Rogers High School), Brianna DuBose (Summit Academy), Jerry J. Easter Jr. (Whitmer High School), Caitlin Fitzgerald (Phoenix Academy), Halle Foss (Sylvania Northview High School), La’Marious Harris (Achieve Career Preparatory Academy), Trenton Hertzfield (Perryburg Junior High), Morgan Hilbert (Anthony Wayne High School), Hasaan Hunter (Rogers High School), Caroline Jardine (Cardinal Stritch High School), Modesty Johnson (ECOT), Scott Johnson (Summit Academy), Kareem Jones (Waite High School), Allison Kuhr (Toledo School for the Arts), Vannessia Lawson (Bowsher High School), La' marquitta Long (Achieve Career Preparatory Academy), Tanasio Loudermill (Toledo Early College High School), Joseph Martin (Phoenix Academy), Treva Mathis (Phoenix Academy), Kalisa McCalland (Horizon Science Academy-Toledo), Bryanna McClure (Waite High School), Adriaonna McDuffey (Phoenix Academy), Jacob Menden (Sylvania Southview High School), Ryan Middlebrooks (Whitmer High School), Nadejda Mirochnitchenko (Sylvania Southview High School), My’Kaja Nash (Blessed Sacrament Junior High), Tori Nelson (Start High School), Erica Parker (Start High School), Steven Pedro (Anthony Wayne High School), David Person (Start High School), Nancy Ransom (Maumee Country Day School), Conner Restorick (Sylvania Southview High School), Robert Roberson (Penta Career Center), Salvador Rodriquez (Waite High School), Hannah Skowronek (Bedford Senior High), Marissa Stewart (Bowsher High School), Camille Sturdivant (Notre Dame Academy), Andrew Thomas (Toledo School for the Arts), Simone Tilmon (Horizon Science Academy-Toledo), Katelin Uhinck (Queen of Apostles Junior High), Devante Urbina (Woodward High School), Armand Velez (Summit Academy), Levia Warrick (Start High School), Paris Wells (Waite High School), Molly Wetter (Ladywood High School), Ettel Williams (Waite High School), and Pearline Young (Horizon Science Academy-Toledo).

Program support for the 2011 YAAW program is provided by: AIGA- Toledo Chapter, Ms. Julie Beckert, Ms. Sally Binard, Barbara Chappell and Ace Acebedo, Charter One Bank, Community Foundation for Southeast Michigan, Sara Jane  and Bill DeHoff, Mark and Mollie Dixon, Findlay Davies, Inc., Ms. Edith Franklin, Ms. Penny Gentieu, Mr. and Mrs. David Guip, Hanson Inc., HCR Manor Care, Health Care REIT, Mrs. Marcia Helman, Sharon A. Kerstetter, Key Bank, Kingston HealthCare Co., Dr. and Mrs. Allan Kirsner, Lakeside Interior Contractors, Inc., Leadership Toledo, Libbey Inc., Lighthouse Branding & Merchandising, Mr. Tedd Long, Lucas County Job and Family Services, Lucas County Summer Youth Employment Program, McDonald Partners, Jim Moore and Tim Valko, Mr. Michael Moran, Ohio Arts Council, OptiVue, Owens Corning, PART OF IT Project, The Perfect Measuring Tape, ProMedica Health System, Margaret and Richard Ressner, Rudolph/Libbe Companies, Savage & Associates, Mr. and Mrs. Edwin S. Skinner, Jr., The Stranahan Foundation, Studio Sans Nom, TARTA, Toledo Blade, Toledo Community Foundation, Toledo Edison,, Toledo Museum of Art, Mr. and Mrs. Scott Trumbull, United North, University of Toledo College of Visual and Performing Arts, Wal-Mart Foundation and Facility #8139, Mr. and Mrs. David Weinberg, Mr. and Mrs. Bob Zimmerman, Mr. Robert Zollweg, Mr. Edward Zraik, and Mr. and Mrs. Thomas G. Zraik. 

To learn more about the YAAW program, please visit

The Arts Commission of Greater Toledo is the longest standing arts commission in the state of Ohio that develops and promotes the arts in the community, serving Northwest Ohio since 1959. 419-254-ARTS

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