LA2050 Grants Challenge applications are open now through June 28th, 2024.
2023 Grants Challenge

Creative Workforce Development through Arts Education

LACHSA offers a free public arts education, providing career pathways for the next generation of creative artists who will lead the arts, entertainment and creative economy careers of tomorrow. Student artists come from every corner of LA County, representing the county's great diversity. This creative incubator has conservatory-style, professional-level training across numerous creative disciplines, including new direct-to-career training programs in Theatre Tech, Music Production, Film, and Fashion Design.


What is the primary issue area that your application will impact?

Access to Creative Industry Employment (sponsored by the Snap Foundation)

In which areas of Los Angeles will you be directly working?

County of Los Angeles

In what stage of innovation is this project, program, or initiative?

Expand existing project, program, or initiative

What is your understanding of the issue that you are seeking to address?

The creative economy in Los Angeles County has historically underrepresented the wide-ranging diversity of the region. Given that artists must practice their craft for years before venturing into professional pursuit, the high-quality training and preparation necessary for creative sector jobs can be cost-prohibitive to many families who may see that spark of potential in their young student but cannot provide resources for training. This cycle of lack of resources, leading to lack of access, leading to lack of encouragement, perpetuates a homogeneity that permeates the entertainment sector and the art worlds in general. Accessible and unobscured pathways need to be created for those underrepresented, but gifted, students to learn about the avenues available to them for a future in the arts and creative industries.

Describe the project, program, or initiative this grant will support to address the issue.

LACHSA provides the opportunity for socioeconomically diverse students from throughout LA County to receive a free, public conservatory-style arts education, creating the creative pathways that allow them to become the problem solvers and changemakers that will drive the future creative economy. The school has five core arts disciplines: Cinematic Arts, Dance, Music, Theatre, and Visual Arts. LACHSA's proven methodology of traditional academic classes, followed by an entire afternoon dedicated to the arts, as well as performance/exhibition opportunities throughout the year, has been a model program in cultivating the talent and drive crucial to success in the arts. Our alumni are working in all facets of the arts and entertainment sector and are a testament to LACHSA's success. LACHSA's outreach initiatives are supported by a dedicated Equity Coordinator who forges relationships with community organizations to help identify potential LACHSA students and give them the tools they need to prepare for the rigor of a comprehensive arts education. Once at LACHSA, these students will have access to professional teaching artists and training on industry-standard equipment that will prepare them for immediate employment in creative fields or continued education at the college level. Support will allow LACHSA to engage more community partners and invest in new teachers and to ensure that all students have an equal opportunity to have LACHSA's highest-quality free arts education.

Describe how Los Angeles County will be different if your work is successful.

LACHSA impacts LA County by providing a training ground for student artists from all backgrounds, ethnicities, and socioeconomic levels. Students come from every corner of LA County and reflect the wide diversity of the area, with the common thread that unites them--talent and a drive to create. With the outcry for more diverse voices in the creative economy, LACHSA is a key contributor to a solution by having creative workforce development programs in addition to college preparatory academics. Besides the rigorous conservatory training that readies student artists for careers in the arts right after high school, LACHSA has also recently introduced additional straight-to-work programs--Commercial Music Production, AR/VR Film, Fashion Design, and Theatre Technology. These opportunities for our talented students to directly enter the creative workforce in LA County will contribute to the region's stature as the creative capital of the world.

What evidence do you have that this project, program, or initiative is or will be successful, and how will you define and measure success?

We collect race and socioeconomic data on our student population and their families to measure the ongoing diversity at the school, especially with regard to underrepresented populations at the school and the impact of access to our arts programming. We will also use graduation rates as an indicator of success (our current graduation rate is 99%). In addition, we will keep track of alumni and their successes in the arts and entertainment sector and use this anecdotal data to measure the success of those pursuing their art.

Approximately how many people will be impacted by this project, program, or initiative?

Direct Impact: 550

Indirect Impact: 10,600