Adobe Youth Voices Summit Draws Teens, Educators from 23 Countries
Program Features Keynote by “Bully” Filmmaker Lee Hirsch, Appearance by Multi-Grammy Award Winner Common
SAN JOSE, Calif. - The Adobe Foundation today announced its third international Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) Summit, welcoming 136 youth and educators to Silicon Valley Aug. 12-16 for an immersive digital media arts program. Middle and high school-age youth from 23 countries across AYV’s global network will collaborate with creative professionals to create original projects in video, photography, animation and other digital media categories, expressing vision for social change on issues such as bullying, self-image and cultural awareness. Visiting educators will attend sessions designed to help them advance creativity in education and enhance their curriculum to inspire greater creative confidence in their students.
“We’re excited to bring together AYV youth and educators from around the world to collaborate and deepen the skills being fostered by the AYV curriculum,” said Michelle Crozier Yates, director of corporate responsibility, Adobe and Adobe Foundation executive director. “An overwhelming 96 percent of AYV students surveyed recently by Adobe said they believe creativity is important to their career success. Our goal is to equip these young people with the tools and skills they need to express their creativity and communicate their ideas in an impactful way – we see them as the problem solvers, critical thinkers and leaders of tomorrow.”
Kasiemobi Walters, an 18-year-old from New York, has been involved with AYV for three years and is attending AYV Summit for the first time. “I have grown enormously from my experience with AYV,” Walters said. “From the workshops, training and tools they provided, I transformed from a young man who was once afraid to express who he was into a highly social, outgoing youth advocate for social justice.”
AYV Summit formally opens on Tuesday with a keynote by documentary filmmaker Lee Hirsch, known for his 2011 film, Bully, as well as for being founder of The Bully Project, which works to change the culture of bullying into one of empathy and action.
“I’m excited to participate in the AYV Summit and share my experience as a filmmaker with young digital artists,” said Hirsch. “It’s encouraging to see young people come together and use digital media as a platform to creatively express their point of view on tough social issues. I hope by sharing my experience in film, it will inspire them to use their creative expression and continue to make a positive impact on their peers and society at large.”
AYV Summit will culminate Friday in a celebration of the inspirational media produced by the youth, featuring special guest Common, a multi-Grammy award winning musician/actor/author. The Common Ground Foundation, started by Common, encourages students to explore their creative talent as a key to unlocking their unique gifts. In addition, the Adobe Foundation will recognize winners of the 2013-2014 Adobe Foundation Creativity Scholarships.
Other AYV Summit guests include education leaders from U.S. Department of Education, UNICEF, George Lucas Educational Foundation, and Americans for the Arts, who will meet to discuss best practices for advancing and implementing creativity in education.
In conjunction with AYV Summit, Adobe this week released findings of a survey of AYV youth, reflecting their views on the importance of creativity in career success, and societal issues igniting their passion for change. Data was sourced from 3,512 youth respondents who completed the AYV Year 7 Youth Post-Program Survey, fielded from March to June 2012 with 15 Year 7 program partners. A total of 1,892 youth projects were evaluated for trends in themes/topics. Among issues sparking highest interest and passion are cultural awareness, bullying and self-image. However, youth on each continent reflect a unique focus on issues most relevant to their own communities. For instance, more projects from Africa highlighted poverty and disease prevention, while North America projects focused on self-image and bullying; youth in Asia were concerned with freedom of speech and women’s rights.
Follow AYV on Twitter, Facebook and the website to stay on top of Summit activities and experience the digital media projects created there.
About Adobe Youth Voices
Adobe Youth Voices (AYV) is the Adobe Foundation’s global initiative to ignite Creative Confidence in youth by empowering them to find their voice and make it heard. The youth involved in AYV spotlight the issues they care about by creating original media – a process that fosters their passion to make a difference while providing them with the creative skills essential for success in the world today. Through programs like AYV, and by increasing creativity in education, Adobe believes we will better equip young people to be the problem solvers, critical thinkers and leaders of tomorrow. To learn more about AYV, its point of view on creativity in education and how you can be involved, please visit http://youthvoices.adobe.com/.
About the Adobe Foundation
The Adobe Foundation is a 501(c)(3) private foundation created and funded by Adobe Systems Incorporated to leverage human, technological and financial resources to drive social change and community improvements.
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