E4 Youth’s Summer Update: Wrapping Up Shadow The Pros 2018

Standing up in front of a client to present my work is never easy for me, and I’ve been doing it for more than 25 years. Now imagine you’re a high school or college student, presenting to a roomful of your peers and creative industry professionals. That’s just what E4 Youth’s Shadow the Pros participants did this summer.  

What is Shadow the Pros?

In E4 Youth’s annual summer fellowship program teams of promising young creative talent work on real-world projects with our industry partners. One student, Berhnis Zepeda, shared: “I had to catch the bus at 8am, get to the library at around 9, wait an hour outside until it opened then wait until 1pm for the program to start.” All of that before spending upwards of six hours on Shadow The Pros work.

Like E4 Youth’s Get Creative Enrichment Clubs and Creative College Mentors, the Shadow teams are very diverse. This is by design — and the reason why is perfectly expressed by participant Savannah Garza:

“When you’re a person of color and you’re going into a creative industry, which probably isn’t common in your family, and your parents had to sacrifice a lot and you’re probably the first to go to college… sometimes it can feel alienating. You may feel like you’re not good enough or you don’t know as much as somebody else, but you shouldn’t let that stop you. It only makes you stronger as a creative to keep going.”

Capstone Presentations

At the end of their Shadow the Pros fellowships, each team gave a presentation at the Capstone Event and celebration. They all had different approaches, but each one was dynamic, polished and truly inspiring.

Shadow The Pros 2018 Awards and Recognition

Outstanding Teammates
Jennifer Chavez
Annie Ricotta
Bryson Williams
Debbie Nehikhuere
Isabella de la Garza
Gabriela Chavez

Most Improved
Cole Nguyen

Strongest Leader
Bryson Williams

Additional Partners
Austin Public Library
Bank of America
Nav Sooch Foundation

E4 Program Coordinators
Denise Gutierrez
James Cudjo

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