Update: We received the photo above of today’s award presentation. Pictured from Left to Right: Jason Yoon, Executive Director, New Urban Arts; Rosalia Velis, Studio Team Advisory Board Chair; and First Lady Michelle Obama. Photo by Steven E. Purcell
It’s official! New Urban Arts, an interdisciplinary arts studio and gallery for high school students and emerging artists in Providence, Rhode Island that empowers young artists to explore the visual, performing, and literary arts through yearlong free out-of-school programs, is being nationally recognized as one of 15 youth arts and humanities programs to receive the prestigious 2009 Coming Up Taller Award. Youth and adult representatives of the program have traveled to Washington, D.C. today for a White House ceremony, where they have accepted the award from First Lady Michelle Obama.
Coming Up Taller is a national initiative that recognizes and supports outstanding out-of-school and after-school arts and humanities programs for children, especially those with great potential, but limited outlets for creative expression. A project of the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities, in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and the Institute of Museum and Library Services, Coming Up Taller Awards honor programs that offer exceptional learning experiences in the arts and the humanities and that have a tangible effect on the lives of young people as evidenced through improved academic scores, enhanced life skills, and positive relationships with peers and adults.