The Colton Institute will be devoted to pedagogic research, curriculum creation, teacher training, and pre-professional workforce development.
NJPAC offers more than 3,000 arts education classes, residencies and workshops each season, reaching more than 100,000 students and families. With the Colton Institute, the first-ever research hub and incubator within a performing arts center, according to the organization, NJPAC will have access to a research staff that will allow it to study the efficacy of its curricular and pedagogical approaches.
Additionally, the Colton Institute will increase NJPAC’s education offerings and advance its services for students, including mentorship and field training onstage, behind the scenes, and in administrative offices.
“The arts are inherently linked to 21st-century skills such as collaboration, creative problem solving, critical thinking, and global and cultural awareness. The Colton Institute will allow NJPAC to expand and enhance programs that advance those skills and help our students use them to take the next steps on their journeys. I’m incredibly grateful to the Colton’s for their acknowledgement and generous support of this mission,” said NJPAC CEO John Schreiber.
One of the Colton’s grandchildren participated in NJPAC’s arts education programs, demonstrating to them how “transformational that experience can be,” the Coltons said in a prepared statement.
“As Arts Center patrons over many seasons, and volunteer leaders engaged in NJPAC’s evolving education work, we wholeheartedly believe in the vision and the objectives of the Institute,” they said.
Through the Colton Institute’s work, NJPAC will be able to expand its arts education and teacher-training programs to reach more students; to develop a more comprehensive arts training experience for teachers and professionals; and to identify research agendas and, working in tandem with a team of professional researchers, study and consistently analyze the impact of the Arts Center’s arts education work.
In addition, the Colton Intitute will help NJPAC to develop rigorous trainings for its arts education faculty, and to develop and disseminate learnings and tested curricula to other performing arts centers, educators, and the field at-large on a national level.
“The arts play an undeniable role in the development of children, creating cultural citizens who have knowledge, compassion, and tangible skills to better understand themselves and others which equip them to contribute to society in meaningful ways,” said Jennifer Tsukayama, vice president of arts education at NJPAC. “With Judy and Stewart Colton’s meaningful gift, the research institute affords us the opportunity to assess the impact and effectiveness of NJPAC’s teaching, learning philosophies, and programs.”[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]
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