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- About 72%of parents surveyed in Indiana agree that afterschool programs help working parents keep their jobs. Read more.
- Pairing service with academic enrichment can support youth success in many ways; including improved self-confidences. Read more.
- The hours from 3 to 6 p.m. are the peak time for juvenile crime and victimization, and the time period when teens ages 16-17 are most likely to be involved in a car crash. Youth left unsupervised for a certain number of hours per week are more likely to be sexually active, and at risk for sexually transmitted diseases. Read more.
- Afterschool and summer program can add 1,080 hours of academic enrichment to a child’s year, equivalent to the number of hours in 144 school days. Read more.
- Afterschool Alliance
- Alliance for a Healthier Generation
- Corporation for National & Community Service
- Harvard Family Research Project
- Indiana Afterschool Network
- MCCOY’s Youth Activity Directory
- The Wallace Foundation
View MCCOY’s “Our Kids, Our Families, Our Communities” television show about the importance of arts programming here.
Youth Champion: Ruth Wolff, Director, Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra (ISO) Learning Community
Ruth supports the programming of the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra (MY0) and builds relationships in the community, finding ways to connect people with inspiring musical experiences. MYO is a youth and family development program of the ISO. Program teachers use music instruction to teach life skills. MYO has approximately 250 students in the program and seven performing ensembles. What makes MYO particularly unique is that parents are encouraged to rehearse and perform with the students throughout the year. Tuition for the program is modest – MYO’s focus is on providing a lesson and orchestra experience for families who may not otherwise have access.
- Why did you want to go into this line of work?
I chose to go into arts administration after some wonderful work experiences in the arts while in college. As a musician I have a particular joy for instrumental music and have been very fortunate to spend my professional life supporting the work of local music organizations.
- What is most rewarding about your job?
The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra has such a vibrant presence in the community, offering opportunities for people of all ages, and I love getting to share that message. One of my favorite moments each year is when the newest musicians in the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra (parents and kids!) walk on stage at Hilbert Circle Theatre for the first time in preparation for their first performance. I stand at the stage entrance every year to see their faces, hear their comments, and just soak in the joy and awe at the experience.
- What is the most challenging part of your job?
Every day is something new. The Learning Community at the ISO is designed to respond to community needs, which means being flexible and agile. I love the challenge of it, but there is no “routine” to settle into!
- How has MCCOY helped your organization succeed or grow?
MCCOY has been a wonderful friend to the Metropolitan Youth Orchestra program over the years, helping us with assessment, trainings, and general support. There are resources available, including the EASY Book that has become our guide for problem-solving.
- Where do you see yourself and your organization in the next five years?
My future, the future of the ISO, and the community are very much intertwined. I’ve spent so much time in the community, talking to many people and organizations that are solving problems as well as bringing joy and creativity to the world around us. It is impossible for me think about one without the other anymore. I want to live in a vibrant, connected community and Indianapolis has made great strides over the years. The ISO is more connected with every facet of our community than ever before – through events like Community Day where we throw the doors of Hilbert Circle Theatre open and people can experience everything the ISO has to offer, to MYO where families can learn and play together, to our Teddy Bear series where pre-school age children can experience the ISO on their terms. I love to see the creative ways that the ISO and, more broadly, music can connect us with one another. The future holds tremendous opportunity and I’m excited to be a part of it.