I Spy: BEAU and Spy Hop Partner on Digital Media Programs for Youth
BEAU (Broadview Entertainment Arts University) has had the honor of supporting Spy Hop and their programs in a variety of ways. Spy Hop Production’s mission is to mentor young people in the digital media arts to help them find their voice, tell their stories, and be empowered to affect positive change in their lives, their communities, and the world.
BEAU has sponsored several Spy Hop events, including PitchNic, which is a film making exercise that culminates with a display of the students’ work. This year was the 10th annual event and well over 1,000 people attended.
Kasandra VerBrugghen, Spy Hop’s executive director, said, “Spy Hop and BEAU have benefited from our ability to partner on events and look forward to many more opportunities to work together in the future.”
Spy Hop exists because they believe that the next generation has a lot to say. And, they believe that when armed with awareness and knowledge, youth can speak more articulately and with greater impact. Spy Hop’s digital media education programs empower the next generation of media makers to speak for themselves through a medium that they love: digital media.
Spy Hop opened its doors in 1999 in Salt Lake City, Utah, serving 12 students. Currently, Spy Hop provides approximately 2,000 youth annually (ages 7 – 24) with hands-on and mentorship-based programs in film, music, radio, and digital design during the critical after-school hours of 4-8pm. Recognized by the White House as one of the top arts and humanities based organizations in the country, Spy Hop was chosen as a finalist for the 2010 National Arts and Humanities Youth Award given by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities.
All of Spy Hop’s project-based programs encourage youth to explore issues and concerns that are relevant and meaningful to their lives, to become critical consumers of media and to become actively involved in their communities. Through the production of their own media, youth are given an opportunity to discover their voice, to think creatively and work collaboratively with peers from diverse backgrounds. Spy Hop continually strives to close the digital divide by reaching out to underserved youth and marginalized communities needing access to and instruction in the latest digital technologies.
It is organizations like Spy Hop that create opportunities for young people to explore new technologies, new ways to find their creativity and believe in themselves, as they become adults. BEAU is proud to partner with Spy Hop and looks forward to continuing to make these types of programs available as students graduate from high school and begin to look for a college with a similar vision.