Metro Arts Summer Institute Returns This Summer; Talented Teen Artists Encouraged to Apply

After a successful inaugural run last year, the Metro Arts Summer Institute is set to return to the Downtown campus of St. Peter’s Prep this July.

The program allows 15 local high school students to dive into an intensive two-week arts training curriculum, taught by Jersey City artists (and Prep art faculty) Megan Klim and Nyugen Smith. It was modeled on the state Governor’s School for the Arts, which hasn’t been in operation since the summer of 2008 due to state budget cuts.

Last year, Klim told us that the program would seek local sponsors to help cover tuition costs for those who couldn’t cover the $500 fee. And her and Smith have done just that for this year’s program. With Goldman Sachs and LITM stepping up to the plate, the Institute is able to offer six full scholarships based on need, as well as several half-scholarships that are purely merit-based.

Klim says this is a crucial element of the program, given that it operates in an urban area populated by many young people who have much more talent than money.

“This great news is in alignment with our vision of offering a quality and prestigious program at an extremely affordable rate,” she says in an email. “We feel this program is essential to teens and delivers something that no other program offers in the metro area.”

But don’t just take Klim’s word for it; here’s what 2010 Institute student and Jersey City resident Katie Welles has to say about the program.

“I really grew with figure drawing. Having large chunks of time to work on our drawing, really helped develop our skills as well as give us the opportunity to explore various materials,” she says. “With the 3D class, I was challenged to bring 2D to life. Making something functional beyond a sketch was challenging and fun.”

A Goldman Sachs representative says it was a no-brainer to sign on to sponsor the program.

“Goldman Sachs is proud to support the 2011 Metro Arts Summer Institute and the many talented Hudson County students in this program who will gain in-depth art experience through this partnership,” managing director Anthony Cammarata says. “We look forward to seeing the students’ work featured in Pro Arts’ Studio Tour this fall.”

The application deadline for the program is May 25, and it runs from July 11 to July 22 from 9 am to 3 pm each day. For more information, or to apply, visit the Institute’s website.

Jon Whiten

co-founded the Jersey City Independent. He is currently the Deputy Director of New Jersey Policy Perspective.