Applications being accepted for After School Matters

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Now’s the time for Austin youth to sign up for the next round of After School Matters programs.

High school students should submit their application for the spring apprenticeship and internship programs, which begin Jan. 27.

Programs in the arts, communications, science, sports and technology will be offered at 63 CPS high schools, 41 parks, and 79 community organizations, businesses and colleges throughout Chicago, as well as downtown at Gallery 37 Center for the Arts.

Here are some of the programs that will be offered in Austin:

R.A.M.P. (Readiness, Ability, Marketability, and Progression) for College and Careers at Austin Polytechnical Academy: This program is ideal for 10th, 11th and 12th graders interested in learning about various educational and occupational possibilities that are available after high school graduation.

Teens will develop skills needed for success in college and careers, and learn about timelines and procedures involved when applying for college, scholarships and jobs. The will also receive tips on improving basic interviewing and professional conversation skills.

Sports 37@Columbus Park at Columbus Park: Teens will get the opportunity to train to become coaches, instructors or officials in a variety of sports, such as basketball, football, baseball, soccer and volleyball.

The program incorporates SPARK-Active Recreation Curriculum, youth development, officiating, lesson planning, engagement principles and group management. After the fourth week, teens participate in a weekly practice of delivering sports to youth ages 6-12 at a local park, school or community-based organization.

The Little Man Project at Austin Polytechnical Academy: Participants will learn techniques of live performance and arranging a composition through rap, poetry and song. Teens are immersed with weekly workshops that include guest speakers, writing sessions and performances that build their capacity as musicians, artists and business managers.

They are challenged as artists and performers in their fields with professionalism and quality work, culminating to a live showcase that will take place at the end of the program.

Westside Rights2Power at the Austin YMCA: The Westside Rights to Power Program incorporates media making, juvenile justice and business basics to train young people to advocate for positive youth justice.

Teens create media for public messages, participate in Know Your Rights trainings about the juvenile justice system, and build business skills to help themselves and their community.

S.T.A.R.S. (Strong Teens Acting Real on Stage) at Douglass Academy High School: This actors boot camp will cover acting, improvisation and commercial acting. This program will teach teens how to approach film, television and commercial scripts when auditioning for acting gigs.

Teens will learn proper on camera audition techniques and how to create bold characters that are grounded in reality. This program will have an audition and interview process.

West Side Story/AfriCaribbean Arts Connections at Columbus Park: West Side Story AfriCaribbean Connections is a dance and cultural arts education program for teens to connect their cultural roots from Chicago’s West Side to West Africa and the West Indies.

This program builds job skills, community, choice and voice for teens through the cultural arts, while helping youth discover the physical, emotional and mental benefits of these artistic disciplines.

Teens learn movement, music, and textile art forms, produce a DVD and live performance, and conduct service work/outreach workshops with children, elders and other After School Matters programs. Guest speakers, performances and collaborative events through local colleges are a major program component as well.

Move Me Soul at Austin Polytechnical Academy: Move Me Soul is an artistic explosion of dance, spoken word and life skills. It is a dance company facilitated by youth that gives teens a positive sense of future by providing opportunities for creative expression and empowerment through dance and life skills enhancement.

Teens will learn how to produce a dance performance and create a dance portfolio. This is an advanced program where teens are expected to enter the program with some knowledge and basic dance experience.

Digital Video Production at Community Television Network in Logan Square: In this program, teens will get hands-on experience in digital media arts production. Teens will create three collaborative video projects throughout the program. Along with learning video skills, teens will also learn about leadership and responsibility.

Hats, Headbands and Beyond at Gallery 37 Center for the Arts Downtown: Teens will learn basic sewing skills with the anticipation of moving on to more advanced hat-specific techniques. Each teen will create a fashion-forward hat and headband, entirely designed and crafted by the individual teen.

Traditional hat making skills are taught alongside experimental techniques. Sketching and material research will be strongly encouraged.

All After School Matters programs, which typically meet three days a week for three hours per day over the course of 10 weeks, are free and open to Chicago teen residents who are at least 14, and entering or currently enrolled in high school.

Teens can find programs that interest them at locations in and around their neighborhood here.

Applications are accepted only online, and all participants must meet with program instructors to interview or audition. Applying early is encouraged as program opportunities fill up quickly.

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