CPS students can sign up for after-school activities

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After School Matters is now accepting applications for its fall programs in the arts, communications, science, sports and technology.

The programs, which start the week of Sept. 29, will be held at CPS high schools, Chicago Park District facilities, Chicago Public Library branches and community-based organization locations across the city.

In total, about 7,000 paid apprenticeship and internship opportunities in more than 300 programs will be available. The programs will meet approximately three days a week for three hours per day over the course of 10 weeks.

This fall, participating teens will be eligible to earn a stipend of between $275 and $425 (depending on the program level), more than double the previous school year stipend amount. Interns can earn $8.25 per hour.

“We believe that the increased stipend that teens can earn in our school year programs will further lower any barriers to participation for teens across Chicago to engage in high quality, hands-on activities after school,” Mary Ellen Caron, Chief Executive Officer of After School Matters, said in a press release.

Here are some of the programs being offered on the West Side:

Afri-Carribean Arts Connection at Columbus Park: This dance/music/fashion cultural arts education program is for teens who want to connect their cultural roots from the West Side of Chicago to West Africa and the West Indies. 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 via area colleges are a major program component.

S.T.A.R.S. (Strong Teens Acting Real on Stage) at Douglas Academy High School and Austin Community Resource Center: This is an intense acting course for young actors who want to work hard, be challenged and learn the art of acting. This actors boot camp will cover acting, improvisation, commercials and finding an agent. This class teaches students how to approach film, television, and commercial scripts. Students learn proper on-camera audition techniques and how to create bold characters that are grounded in reality.

Urban Hardball (and Softball) at Columbia Park: This community baseball and softball initiative was created to increase the number of African-American youth playing little league, high school, college and ultimately professional baseball. Youth train to become youth umpires and youth trainers with opportunities for work through summer little leagues.

Move Me Soul at Austin Business & Entrepreneurial Academy: This will be an artistic explosion of dance, spoken word and life skills. The goal of the program is to teach teens how to function as a dance company by providing leadership opportunities through dance and life skills. By the end of the program, teens know how to produce a dance performance and how to create a dance portfolio. The final product is a teen produced community dance performance.

R.A.M.P. (Readiness, Ability, Marketability and Progression) at Christ the King School (apprenticeship) and Austin Business & Entrepreneurial Academy (pre-apprenticeship): This program is all about helping students prepare for the future. Teens can expect to put in hard work and do deep thinking about their futures, learn about various educational and occupational possibilities that are available after high school graduation, develop skills needed for success in college and careers, learn about timelines and procedures involved when applying for college, scholarships and jobs, and improve basic interviewing and professional conversation skills.

West African Drum and Dance at Westinghouse College Prep: Teens will learn traditional drum and dance techniques as well as the cultural context and significance of this music in West Africa. Emphasis is given to working as part of a group and planning a final product. As After School Matters programs provide job training, participants learn about the creative process, as well as what a professional artist must go through to produce their own work, network and earn a living.

For more information about how to apply, click here.

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