YCA connects underrepresented young talent to real world work and support networks that increase inclusion and equity in the creative economy.

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Creative career paths are largely inaccessible to marginalized young people.

  • The arts are underfunded in public schools; higher education spaces emphasize theory over professional preparation while creating debt that students with less generational wealth will ultimately need to earn their way out of.

  • Unpaid internships, the most common and powerful catalyst for creative career success, are not sustainable for most young people.

  • The creative industries, which have vastly more and growing pathways to careers than sports, for example, are commonly de-emphasized as a worthwhile pursuit.

 
 

Creative industry teams have looked the same for a long, long time. Smart ones know it’s time to start doing things differently.

  • Graphic design was 93% white in 1991. It’s 73% white today.

  • Art and design are in-demand skills: Facebook, Google, Amazon grew art+design headcount by 65% in 2017.

  • Companies that are committed to diversity and inclusion exponentially outperform their competitors.

 
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We can disrupt the broken system that has created barriers to access in the first place.

  • When we connect creative youth to meaningful work opportunities + support networks, we expand their tool set and capacity to thrive

  • Through training, supported real-world work experience, and connections to industry leaders, the barriers to access can come down.

 

Featured Mentors


 
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Gabriella Sanchez

Gabriella is a multidisciplinary artist working in her hometown of Los Angeles. Gabriella worked as a live-in nanny and freelance graphic designer in Paris in support of her fine art practice. She has worked as both a designer and illustrator for clients such as NIKE, The White House (during Obama’s presidency) and Planned Parenthood. In 2016 she turned to painting as a way to fully integrate her design experience with her fine art sensibilities. Sanchez has shown her work at CCCM: Mexican Center for Culture and Cinematic Arts, Charlie James Gallery, Jeffrey Deitch gallery (New York), Páramo Galeria (Guadalajara) and more.

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Laci Jordan

Laci Jordan is a multi-disciplinary designer, creative director and the modern definition of a renaissance woman. Laci--a proud Huntsville, Alabama native now based in LA--focuses her work around color, pop culture, and representation of people of color. Jordan works between illustration, graphic design, product design, and photography. Laci is widely known for her illustrations with subjects ranging from from portraits of women of color to her favorite sneakers of the moment. Her work is authentic, unapologetic, and unfiltered.  Clients include Disney Imagineering, ESPN, Foot Locker, Jordan Brand, Hibbett Sports, Planned Parenthood, Saint Heron, March for our Lives, Wildfang, Sweetgreen, and many more. 

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Ashley Lukashevsky

Ashley Lukashevsky an illustrator + visual artist born and raised in Honolulu, Hawaii, currently based in Echo Park, Los Angeles. Before moving to illustration full-time, she was the Art Director at KINDLAND and the social impact designer at LA2050, an initiative to create a positive shared future for all Angelenos. She works on all types of illustrations for print, web, social media, and installations. Clients include Refinery29, ACLU, Snapchat, Girls Who Code, REI, Jumpman, Rock the Vote, LennyLetter and more. Ashley dreams of using illustration and art as a tool to strengthen social movements against systemic racism, sexism, and general bullshit-isms. She thinks that in order to tear down these systems, we need to be able to envision a world without them—she is trying to draw what that world looks like.