Friday, April 30, 2010

My Summer Job

We talked in class Thursday about the importance of every member of a business organization knowing the mission statement of that business. This reminded me of my summer job. I teach at First Stage Children's Theatre Academy each summer and at the beginning of every summer when we meet to review the codes of conduct, what to do in emergency situations, and the new goals for the summer, the first thing we do is go over First Stage's mission statement. The following is from First Stage's website:

"About Us

Founded in 1987, First Stage Children's Theater has grown from a small theater for young audiences to a nationally acclaimed company drawing annual audiences of more than 135,000 people. With a season including six mainstage plays, two First Steps shows and one touring production (more than 300 performances annually), First Stage has become one of the largest programs in the nation.

Mission Statement:
First Stage Children's Theater touches hearts and transforms lives by creating exceptional theater experiences for young people and families through...

  • Professional theater productions that engage, enlighten and entertain.
  • Theater academy training that fosters life skills through stage skills.
  • Dynamic in-school education programs that promote learning through theater.

    First Stage offers:

    • Performances for family audiences: Each performance concludes with an informative talk-back between the actors and audience.

    • Matinee performances for school groups: Every school group attending a matinee receives a free educator enrichment guide that offers suggestions for activities and discussion questions linking the production with the class curriculum.

    • First Steps series: These shows are an interactive theater experience that introduces children from ages three to six to the theater in a fun and exciting way at the Milwaukee Youth Arts Center.
    • Multi-Cultural School Assembly Tours: Each season, First Stage tours a production to schools throughout southeastern Wisconsin that highlights one of our community's cultures. Past tours have included African American, Latino, Hmong, German, Irish and Native American themes.

    • Arts-in-education programs for area schools: First Stage spends more than 2,000 hours annually in classrooms throughout southeastern Wisconsin offering pre-performance and post-performance classroom workshops, Teaching Through Theater (T3) programs and after school creative drama programs.

    • First Stage Theater Academy: The Academy is a professional theater training program teaching "life skills through stage skills" to approximately 1,700 young people ages 5 - 18 each year. It is the second largest program of its kind in the nation.

    First Stage Children's Theater is a member of Theater Communications Group (TCG), TYA/USA and Americans for the Arts (AFTA), as well as the Milwaukee Arts Partners and Theatre Wisconsin. First Stage is also a Cornerstone Member of the United Performing Arts Fund. The company is the recipient of the Marcus Center for the Performing Arts' 2002 Bravo Award for outstanding achievement in the performing arts."

  • Specifically as an employee of the academy we focus a lot on the "Life skills through stage skills" clause of the mission statement. It is written on our academy T-Shirts, we discuss every morning how we are achieving that mission, and we talk with parents and children frequently about how our goal isn't how to teach kids how to act, but how to live good lives and interact positively with one another. As the website's about me stated, First Stage has gone through a large amount of growth since it was founded and I attribute much of that growth to the amount of focus put on their mission statement and making sure their employees work towards that mission.

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