Monthly Archives: June 2013

Arts and Sciences are meant to be studied together


The modern romantic notion that artists, musicians, and writers “just do it” is as big a myth as the idea that engineers, scientists, and doctors do not require inspiration and creativity to get their work done.

John Pavley, current CTO of The Huffington Post, and worked at Apple Computer, DoubleClick, Yahoo, LimeWire, and Spotify, recently expressed the inextricably linked nature of arts and sciences.  A painter needs to know the chemistry of each paint.  A painter may use geometry to design a piece.  The separation between arts and sciences is a contemporary thinking that has created some unfortunate consequences.  If we look back in time, we’d note that arts and sciences are meant to complement each other.  Look at Leonardo da Vinci, an artist, an engineer, a scholar of arts and sciences.


10 skills children learn through arts


Recently, Lisa Phillips, author of the book “The Artistic Edge:  7 Skills Children Need to Succeed in an Increasingly Right Brain World”, blog journalist, arts and leadership educator, speaker and business owner, discussed top 10 skills children learn from arts.  These are skills that would be vital to our children’s future success that may not always be addressed by a STEM education.

  1. Creativity
  2. Confidence
  3. Problem Solving
  4. Perseverance
  5. Focus
  6. Non-Verbal Communication
  7. Receiving Constructive Feedback
  8. Collaboration
  9. Dedication
  10. Accountability

This list of skills was recently featured on the ARTSblog, a program of Americans for the Arts, and Washington Post blog.  We at Arts to Grow have also observed this list first hand.  We see it in our music program.  We see it in our visual arts program.  We see it in our theater program.  Simply said, we see it our kids, as they grow and mature in our programs.  Join us in our mission to nurture these skills in our kids.

First Lady continues to show support for arts in education

Recently, First Lady Michelle Obama and famous actress Kerry Washington visited Savory Elementary School in Washington D.C.  Savory is one of the schools selected for the Turnaround Arts initiative.  Kerry is a committee member for this initiative and mentors at the elementary school.  This visit continues to show that our country values arts in our school, and recognizes how important arts is in our children’s lives.  Unfortunately, there are many challenges in realizing these important goals.  Arts to Grow looks to play our parts in bringing arts to school and to enriching our children’s lives.  Join us!

Arts to Grow thanks event partners

DSC_0028Last month, Arts to Grow hosted a wonderful cultivation event that engaged community members and potential donors in an effort to continue to drive awareness, donations, and growth.  The event was a success in part of the wonderful donations made by our partners:  Sincere thanks to Graham Meyerson, owner of Springwood Events, for the catering, and Moore Brothers for the generous donation of wine and venue.

And of course, thank you to everyone who attended.

To check out more photos from the event, please visit our Flickr page.

Volunteer Spotlight: Michael Meng, Private Equity Executive assists ATG


Arts to Grow is very pleased that Michael Meng, Senior Associate, Healthcare sector Apax Partners has been working with us since November 2012 to develop our launch strategy for our Growing Innovative Youth Initiative  (raising $500,000 to kick off our “5in5” Campaign to serve 5,000 children annually). Michael sits on the board of Arthur Ashe Youth Tennis & Education as well as Medicomp, a company that provides remote cardio-telemetry services.

During his MBA studies at Wharton, Michael made a pact with a group of students he worked with in a program called the Nonprofit Board Leadership Fellows. Upon completion of the program, they pledged to become involved in a nonprofit organization and make a measurable impact. Michael states, “this has allowed us to hold each other accountable for continuing our efforts in the nonprofit world”.

Michael explains, “it has been great helping the organization (ATG) build the processes and action plan from the ground up, adapting it to today’s challenging fundraising world. I find the leadership of the organization (ATG), particularly Mallory, to be very engaging and enthusiastic about the organization’s mission. The chance to truly make a difference permeates throughout the organization”.

Throughout his childhood, Michael himself participated in musical theater productions and music arts. He received formal piano and viola training for more than 12 years and played in both the Metropolitan Youth Symphony of Metro Detroit and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra Civic – 2 of the top youth symphonies in the country.

“I once even had the opportunity to play with world renowned violinist, conductor and composer, Itzahk Perlman”, Michael states. “Playing music and the other arts in general helped develop my mind, maturity, and discipline which I have carried with me ever since”.

Michael strongly believes there is a great disparity in the opportunity for arts among children due to economic class status. According to Michael, “this leaves quite a hole in a child’s life and development. There is an aspect of intelligence and maturity that comes from the arts that cannot be measured directly, but certainly exists”.