VII Academy part­ners with the YMCA of Greater Boston

Written on January 14, 2021, posted in News

The VII Academy is excit­ed to announce its first pro­gram in col­lab­o­ra­tion with the YMCA Boston.

The ini­tia­tive sup­ports twen­ty high school stu­dents who are enrolled in the YMCA Young Achievers pro­gram and who come from some of the most under-resourced neigh­bor­hoods in the city. The stu­dents have com­mit­ted to an 8-month pro­gram learn­ing pho­tog­ra­phy, doc­u­ment­ing their com­mu­ni­ties, and express­ing them­selves visu­al­ly. The YMCA Achievers Program’s mis­sion is to help teens dis­cov­er and pur­sue high­er edu­ca­tion and career goals by equip­ping them with the skills and com­mu­ni­ty role mod­els they need to get there.

Mentors Ben Brody, Tsar Fedorsky, Alison Morley, and Nina Robinson will lead the class through four mod­ules: the first focus­es on team-building and pho­tog­ra­phy fun­da­men­tals; the sec­ond looks inwards and engages the stu­dents in cre­at­ing a per­son­al fam­i­ly album; the third looks out­ward at a doc­u­men­tary project about their com­mu­ni­ty; and the fourth focus­es on cre­at­ing books, an exhi­bi­tion, and a com­mu­ni­ty event in Boston to share their work with a broad audi­ence. The pro­gram will begin vir­tu­al­ly but will tran­si­tion to in-person learn­ing as con­di­tions allow. The stu­dents will have a ded­i­cat­ed media cen­ter at the YMCA for their use, equipped with com­put­ers, pro­jec­tors, and a Fujifilm print kiosk.

The stu­dents were select­ed through a com­pet­i­tive appli­ca­tion and inter­view process at the YMCA. The pro­gram is made pos­si­ble by our spon­sors, includ­ing Fujifilm, who pro­vid­ed X-A5 cam­eras and zoom lens­es to the 20 stu­dents. Adobe pro­vid­ed soft­ware licens­es, and sig­nif­i­cant sup­port is also pro­vid­ed by PhotoWings, Digital Silver Imaging, the VII Foundation, and the YMCA.

“I think the pro­gram has a tremen­dous amount to offer our stu­dents, regard­less of whether they decide to pur­sue a career in pho­tog­ra­phy,” said Ben Brody. “The essen­tial skills that make a good pho­tog­ra­ph­er will help you what­ev­er you decide to do - cre­ativ­i­ty, problem-solving, con­fi­dence, advo­cat­ing for your­self, and advo­cat­ing for your com­mu­ni­ty.”

We’ll be post­ing updates from the pro­gram and stu­dents through our social media plat­forms; make sure you fol­low us on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

PhotoWings’ mis­sion is to high­light and help facil­i­tate the pow­er of pho­tog­ra­phy to influ­ence the world.