Theater Tech Program Highlights Student Talent

WI Web Staff | 5/12/2014, 11:49 p.m.
TTP was started in 2008 in Prince George’s County to help students hone their talents in videography and other photographic works. /Courtesy Photo

Performing arts and workforce development may seem strange bedfellows; but through Joe’s Movement Emporium’s Theater Tech Program (TTP), that pairing has proved to be a game changer in the lives of at-risk teens in Prince George’s County.

On June 5, the program will celebrate its 5th anniversary with a showcase highlighting film, video and photographic work created during the year by student participants -- and graduation ceremonies at the organization’s Mount Rainier facility.

“TTP participants come to us from very low income households with numerous challenges,” said Anthony Henderson, program director. “They may be behind in school, live in a single parent household, or face other barriers to success [but] our program is like a village that literally embraces these young people with one-on-one supports, mentoring and a belief in their abilities.”

TTP, which was created in 2008 as a response to the high teen unemployment rate in Prince George’s County, Maryland, provides students ages 16-21 with technical instruction in theater production, operation and digital media along with critical supports such as tutoring, college exploration and life skills coaching.

Through the program, students receive 90 hours of academic support, 30 hours of in-house work experience on professional sound, lighting, photography and video equipment; and 60 hours of off-site work-study training with industry professionals at organizations that include Women in Film and Video, Round House Theater and the University of Maryland.