Archive for June, 2009

TMA's Anxious For What's to Come: TMP'09-Week 1

Saturday, June 27th, 2009

In the opening week of this years Teen Mural Program, Directors, Staff and Instructors alike were blown away by the level of talent and commitment among this years group of teens. It started first thing Monday, as the entire class of 2009 was on time, in their seats and ready to SHINE when the clock struck fourteen hundred hours. After three hours of introductions, review of expectations and intense group work activity to introduce our theme of PEACE, Mr. C, Coach Tunde and the rest of this years TMP staff were able to wrap up the first day with no shadow of doubt and a strong sense of conviction for what is to come.

As the week progressed, the expectations where only heightened. With assistance from interns Isaiah Phillips and Chris Brown along with returners, Imelda Rodriguez, brothers Adrian and Alex Johnson, Marilyn Opeta, Mani Godinez, Viridiana Magallon and Daniel Nava, the bar was set high for the rookie Teen Mural Assistants (TMA’s) to rise to the level of professionalism that is expected during this 10-week program.

Week one finished strong with an art workshop directed by the lovely Laure Nagle. TMA’s and staff, excited to embark on another summer of Research and Design, were all involved as we painted opposite colors along the infamous color wheel. Most memorable of this first week of research was the youth setting themselves apart from teens in previous years with one of the strongest first interviews to date. We were blessed with the presence of Corporate Attorney, Candice Petty who gave TMA’s a good idea of what their primary source research would look like over the next five weeks. TMA’s were all engaged, inquisitive and more than interested in what Ms. Petty had to say and gave some pretty interesting answers when she responded with a few questions she had for them. (see video above)

With newcomers, like Devert Welch, an incoming Senior at East Palo Alto Academy, stepping out of their shell and stepping up to the plate, the tone has been set. Although Devert was originally in it for the “…money, and thats it.” He has now realized that this is something he would like to be a part of even with out his $10/hr salary. It is moments like these when true emotion is felt and a vision of a successful summer fills the room. I think all TMA’s and Staff can agree with me when I say, its going to be a great summer! PEACE!!

Contact, Youth Coordinator, Fred McNeill at 310.927.8375 or email him at for any questions regarding this years Teen Mural Program.

Alex Johnson – Biography

Wednesday, June 10th, 2009

alex_johnsonAlex Johnson is an 18 years old graduating senior at East Palo Alto Academy. In the fall of 2009, Alex will be attending Cal State East Bay in Hayward, California where he plans to study Fire Science in hopes of becoming a firefighter. In connection with his schooling, Alex is a member of College Track, an academic support institution. Outside of his academic life, Alex enjoys lifting weights, playing basketball and listening to music. As a child, he learned to play the guitar and can be seen practicing on his spare time.