By Jade Stephen ’17 and Matthew Yan ’17
Art is a way for many people to express how you feel or a way to be free and not have to worry about what’s going on in the world.
“It’s the only thing that I can do patiently because I’m really impatient so for me to sit down and do art, it helps to calm me down and set my mind straight,” said Bonnie Lin ’16.
Pratt Institute initiated the Young Scholars and Design Initiative for Community Empowerment (DICE) program to allow students, those especially in high school, to have a wider view into the arts and see the different ways art can be expressed. It also allows students to continue on with their passion for art. However, art doesn’t only have to stay within drawing and painting but is expressed through fashion, architecture, photography and etc. Pratt Institute’s main goal is to provide a friendly and knowledgeable experience for students who engage in their interests in art and design.
According to Mr. Jonathan Pincus, Midwood has an outstanding relationship with Pratt due to the fact that many of the students in their art programs come from our school. They receive so many outstanding students from our school that they collaborate with us and want to ensure the partnership.
The art programs that they offer allow students to explore museums and go places where art is exposed to the public. They get to see how it’s incorporated into our daily lives and how well other artists construct their artwork. The students even get the chance to do their own artwork and face the challenges many art majors face. They learn how to deal with these challenges and incorporate it into their art work. The students are taught by professors who help them learn different art techniques.
Lin stated that she enjoyed the program because she got to make new friends and got to meet others who took a liking to art. The program also helped her learn different materials and helped her make different types of art such as making a sculpture out of old keys.
The Young Scholar program is a scholarship program that runs for three years and allows those who are strong about the arts and wish to pursue it in the future to participate. Not only does it allow them to be fully focused on their art career, but it helps them with their college application process along with giving them SAT prep. These SAT prep courses take place in July.
According to the Pratt website, in order for students to apply for the program, they must have a copy of their most recent report card, a letter of recommendation from a teacher, an answer to the personal statement prompt that the institute gives them, and three pictures of their best artwork. However, for a student to be eligible for this program they must meet the income eligibility and must be entering the tenth grade in that specific school year.
Troy Viechweg ’16 stated he was nervous about applying for the program at first due to the fact that he was going up against other students. Viechweg is now on the cover of the Young Scholar program’s pamphlet.
According to the Pratt website, when the students are accepted into the program they must show up to the interview with a parent, proof of their household income, and five to ten examples of their artwork that they’ve been working on in or out of school. They also must include a current art work that is in progress of being completed.
Although there are loads of requirements for students to be accepted, it all gets paid off in the end when they start the program. The program helps give them many opportunities and helps them better understand where they’re heading in their art career. The program also teaches them many lessons.
“It helped me learn about other mediums and it helped me figure out my major,” Anna Li ’16 stated. The program also helped Li learn that by working hard she can improve more on her artwork.
The program also gives them more opportunities in the art world, and it helps them have a better chance into getting into Pratt. They also get to have more experience with different art materials and art majors which can help in the near future when applying to jobs in different areas. They not only have experience and a better chance of becoming a Pratt student, but they get to be involved more in their artwork with a better understanding. The Young Scholar program isn’t the only program that provides a wide array of opportunities and hands on material. The DICE program does the same thing as well, but it’s on Wednesdays after school rather than on Saturdays and Wednesdays. It also runs through the spring and fall semesters rather than continue on in the summer.
In the program, students also got to work with 3D-printers, oil painting with water soluble, and got to learn new techniques just like the Young Scholar students.
Lin Dan Zheng ’17 was really happy to be able to learn how to use oil paint due to the fact that our school only has watercolors and acrylics. Zheng will also be in one of the pamphlets for Pratt.
In the program they get to work with materials that our school doesn’t even have which helps give them an opportunity to do something different. The deadline for Young Scholars was on June 1 and the DICE applications are due in the beginning of September. For more information you can see Mr. Pincus or visit the institute’s website.