Interview by Kimberly King
Why was important to bring this type of curriculum for youth to America?
Honor U Performance Arts Academy is a non-traditional school that provides youth with the tools to connect to their highest divine self by facilitating various courses, workshops and seminars on subjects that tackle adolescent behavior and social acceptance. Such topics include healthy relationships, intimate partner violence, youth advocacy, teen parenting, prevention, reproductive health, sexual exploitation, life skills and goal setting. The objective is to awaken the youth’s mind, body and spirit while connecting them to the performing arts. Honor U’s curriculum is essential for youth in America because it was created with youth in mind, from a youth development mindset approach. By valuing youth, we strengthen academic achievement, promote civic engagement and support young people in becoming engaged citizens and healthy individuals.
What has been the biggest success story for Honor U?
In the Summer of 2020, Honor U partnered with the DC Department of Employment Services / Office of Youth Programs and facilitated a six-week accelerated summer program teaching youth between the ages of 14-15 the fundamentals of screenwriting. During the six weeks, youth screenwriters had the opportunity to meet with professionals in the entertainment industry. Out of 30 program participants, six student projects were selected to move forward for production slated in 2021.
What type of impact does Honor U want to make on the world?
Before Honor U can tackle the world, our objective is to focus on building a safe haven for youth that are in our community. Providing opportunities that will facilitate a space for learning, most importantly, healing while awakening the artist that resides within them.
How can kids sign-up for the 10-week full-day virtual sessions?
The 10 Week virtual program is geared towards youth who are in middle school. A legal parent/guardian will have to register youth for the program.
What can children expect from the sessions?
Each weekly session, participants will participate in a high-energy virtual program. Where they will spend a week incorporating activities and intimate conversations, facilitated by mental health professionals to encourage fellowship and build community.
How did you develop your passion for children?
I am an educator, having a master’s in educational leadership. My passion for working with youth is connected to my background in the human service Industry. For many years, I have worked professionally to provide services to vulnerable populations that fall below the federal poverty line. I believe in creating high-value programming and making it easily accessible to our most vulnerable community members. Honor U will play a significant role by shaping tomorrow’s leaders and empower future change agents regardless of one’s socio-economic status. My passion for children is simply just being a good human being and wanting to play my part in giving back.
What is your favorite inspirational movie?
Lean On Me is definitely a classic that I find inspirational. The world needs more ” Joe Clark’s.”
Who is your favorite historical figure?
Harriet Tubman. What’s not to love about ” The Moses of Her People.”
For an all-expense paid trip, which place would you like to visit?
I 100% want to go to Egypt. I want to experience the pyramids and overall connect to the energy of ancient Egypt, Kemet and my ancestors.
What is the one technology that has made the world a better place?
The majority of us are experiencing a pandemic for the first time in our lives. I would have to say that the internet has truly made the world a less lonely place. Especially with social distancing and having opportunities to connect with family members and friends through the internet/ technology.
How can everyone keep in contact with you on social media?
Feel free to follow me on Instagram at LaTriceamanda_mfa.