Have you seen Disney’s newest film the The Princess and the Frog yet? I love how the movie inspires young people, but especially represents a breakthrough of role models for African American girls.
Check out these interviews of Anika Noni Rose, who plays ‘Princess Tiana’, and hear what she thinks about the film and her role:
“…I think that the heart of the film is the thought that you should always follow your dreams, always. Whatever it is that your heart most wants and makes your pulse race faster- when you find it go for it…”
- Anika Noni Rose, who plays the Princess Tiana in Disney’s the The Princess and the Frog
Anika is a wonderful actress who has appeared on both Broadway and in films like Dream Girls. She says she also always wanted to play a Disney character. Here’s what she told young journalist Chris Yandek about her childhood dream in a recent interview (click here to listen):
“I dreamed of being a Disney voice. I did not have the aspirations to be a princess like actively, but I just wanted to be a voice. So I didn’t care if I was a kitten or like a leaf or shoelace. I just wanted to be in a Disney movie so badly from when I was very, very little, I was very – I feel like Disney has sort of been the soundtrack to my life. I can remember points in my life in the movies that are with that time or a situation or how I felt in the theater. Fantasia was my first movie…”
- Anika Noni Rose
Check out the cool videos below that give a behind the scenes look at Disney’s return to hand-drawn animation and more:
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Here are some recent posts from my youth site www.DreamerENT.com:
Variety Magazine honored five young performers, Corbin Bleu, Keke Palmer, Jesse McCartney, AnnaLynne McCord and Miranda Cosgrove, for their dedication to community service at a special ceremony on December 5th, 2009. Variety’s Power of Youth Initiative is focused on encouraging top young talent to become involved with philanthropic and humanitarian causes, using their positions in popular culture to motivate others to do the same. Check out the organizations each of the honorees gives their time to below, and learn more at www.variety.com/PowerOfYouth…
If you know or are a high school student you can get a jump start on your future dreams now by beginning to apply for scholarships- even if just a freshman or sophomore. Along with financial aid like government grants based on financial need (determined by filling out a form called the FAFSA), scholarships will help you to pay those large school fees, like tuition, books, and your dorm room – it’s basically FREE money! Apply to as many scholarships as you can, even if it may not seem to you like you will get it. For many of them you can use similar essays and information to apply, but be sure to check the rules to make sure you include everything they ask for. I was able to get enough scholarships to pay for my full college education – its possible for you too!
In November the Today Show named 13-year-old Deidra Shores from Memphis, Tennessee, as the winner of the Today’s Kid Reporter contest. Deidra is an energetic and outgoing young lady and achieving student who wowed the judges with her creative entry video, “Where in the World is Matt Lauer?” For the winning round, she and three other finalists reported on the world’s largest children’s book, a collection of children’s dreams created to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. All of the budding journalists did great work. Congratulations to Deidra on her win!
On her first assignment Deidra boards Carnival Cruise Lines’ newest ship to learn the ins and outs of working on a cruise ship. She seems to have fun interviewing and asking questions about how the ship runs and how the crew spends their time. Watch her in action in the video below:
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For my youth website Dreamer ENT I got to interview an inspiring young entrepreneur, Jasmine Lawrence, who started her own natural hair care company when she was 11. Check out the full interview by clicking below – I’m sure you’ll be inspired. She’s also a fellow NFTE alum (Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship, the program which helped me start a business as a teen). Be inspired by her journey from an innovative 11-year-old to the Oprah Winfrey Show and beyond…
Jasmine Lawrence is a young successful entrepreneur who has definitely been soaring and growing toward her dreams. It all sprouted when she was 11-years-old, after she mixed together natural ingredients to create her own hair oils for her broken, damaged tresses. By age 13 her hair was flourishing, and she was selling her hair products to friends. At 15 she shared her story with Oprah and other major news outlets, and began discussing distribution deals with Wal-Mart – all while striving to get her homework in on time.
Now at 17-years-old, Jasmine’s natural beauty care company Eden BodyWorks has bloomed immensely, and she hopes to bring it to even greater heights. She recently graduated from high school, and is studying computer engineering at Georgia Tech. She’s also featured in the film Ten9Eight: Shoot for the Moon (that we wrote about in a previous post) featuring young entrepreneurs. Watch Jasmine below in a clip from the film:
Video Source: Ten9Eight Website
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(This was originally posted on my youth site www.DreamerENT.com). As a NFTE alumnus I’m really excited to see this film, and encourage everyone to see it as well. To find out more about how you or someone you know can take part in NFTE visit www.nfte.com.)
They’re bright, energetic, and blazing a trail of accomplishment by shooting toward their dreams… Check out the film Ten9Eight featuring a group of young passionate entrepreneurs…
“In America, a kid drops out of high school every 9 seconds… Imagine if they didn’t.” The upcoming documentary Ten9Eight explores this question, by telling the stories of a group of diverse young entrepreneurs from urban neighborhoods around the country who are overlooking their circumstances and starting their own businesses. The film, by award-winning filmmaker Mary Mazzio, follows the teens as they compete in an annual business plan competition run by the Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship (NFTE). The teens are selected from over 24,000 students from across the country, and compete in the final round in New York City for the chance to win $10,000 to launch his or her business.
Here are introductions to some of the young people featured in the film:
Anné Montague, age 17, Founder of Inamoratos Dance (pictured above): Anné does it all. She dances, choreographs, and takes full charge of her dance company, which she started at the age of 10. Anné was raised primarily by her father, Purcell Montague, a truck driver, as her mother suffered from drug addiction. Anné, a focused girl with a big attitude, requires her dancers to go to class and keep their grades up. Anné’s business is a non-profit, aimed at getting inner city kids off the street. Her motto? “No shirt, no shoes, no need. We dance.” Anné will attend Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University next year, majoring in business.
Rodney Walker, age 19, Founder of Forever Life Music and Video Productions: Rodney was put into the foster care system at the age of 5 and ended up homeless on the streets of Chicago. Almost becoming a statistic like many of his brothers, Rodney was able to chart a new future – and is now studying business as a freshman at Morehouse College.
Amanda Loyola, age 16, Founder of Eco-Dog Biscuits: Amanda’s father escaped from the favelas of Rio de Janeiro, finding a job at Burger King in Brooklyn, New York. He inspired his daughter, Amanda, to think that anything might be possible in America. Amanda started her business, a vegetarian dog treat company, after her dog, Princess, died from cancer.
Anné, Rodney, Amanda are but three of several remarkably resilient kids featured in this film, all of whom are facing the most challenging of circumstances in the inner city – making their achievements all the more remarkable.
Descriptions from from the website Ten9Eight.com
Watch the trailer for the inspiring film below:
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(Note: This post is from my youth site www.DreamerENT.com).
Jennette McCurdy – She acts, she sings, and wows us with a bright personality and awesome talent…
You know her as the outspoken “Sam Puckett” on Nickelodeon’s show iCarly and have seen her appear on several other shows like True Jackson VP. Jennette is definitely multi-talented and definitely keeps us entertained on iCarly with her funny antics and great acting, and we also love her musical talent. She describes her sound as “power country” and says, “I think country music is so real and so great, and I have a lot of country influences, but a lot of pop and rock influences as well. I wanted to make sure there was a little bit of all of the influences in my music…”
A few months ago Dreamer ENT’s media partner “The Valder Beebe Show” did an interview with Jennette McCurdy, who talked about her music and acting careers, and gave some inspiring advice to others on following their passions.
Read and listen to a portion of the interview below:
Jennette McCurdy On Following Her Passions
Well let me ask you, you’ve become a star on iCarly… and you’ve starred on a number of other television shows including Malcolm in the Middle, Zoey 101, Will & Grace, Strong Medicine, Law & Order: Special Victims Unit – you are quite busy!
Jennette McCurdy: (Laughs) Yeah, I’ve been really busy. I don’t know, I knew I wanted to act since I was six years old. I knew that’s absolutely what I had to do. And, I don’t know, I wouldn’t settle for anything other than acting. I love it so much.
How is it that you pursued your passion, or know to pursue your passion at a young age? You know there’s adults who don’t know what you obviously know or haven’t done what you’ve done. How do you know to pursue that passion? Or better yet, what gives you the ability to continue to pursue your passion, when you get “nos” and rejections, but you still go on.
JM: I think it’s really important that you know what your passion is, you know that that’s your passion – you can’t want to do it for any other reason other than an absolute love. It’s almost unexplained, you can’t really convey to other people why you love something so much when you love it that much, because they wouldn’t necessarily understand unless they shared the same passion. So whatever your passion is, you have to make sure that its going to be strong and last forever…
Because so many times you go on auditions and callbacks, and you keep going and pushing through, and you might get a job and then there might be a couple of months when you don’t get a job. Then you might get two jobs back to back, and there might be a couple of months when you don’t get a job. But you have to have such a strong love for it that you just keep pushing through no matter what…
No matter what roller coaster ride you’re on you have to keep going forward because if you love it, you’ve just got to know that it will work out, and you’ll get what you’re working for – what your goal is.
Listen to Jennette answer the questions below, and at the end of the clip hear her first single “So Close”:
Check out this fun video Jennette recently posted on her Youtube channel. In it she’s performing a cover of the song “In Color” alongside singer-songwriter Darius Rucker (former Hootie and the Blowfish lead singer who is now on the top of the country music charts).
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This past summer, I had the opportunity to attend and film the Hispanic Youth Symposium at Southern Methodist University in Dallas. Hosted by the Hispanic College Fund, the symposium invited more than 200 local Hispanic high school students and 100 community volunteers to come together for a fun event that prepared the students for college.
The students took part in a three-night, four-day program that allowed them to develop a network of peers and mentors, learn about resources and tools for college, and develop a long-term career vision. Students took part in art, speech, talent and essay contests where they won scholarships and prizes. They also had loads of fun playing games, dancing, exploring the college campus and making new friends.
Want to learn more about scholarships and programs sponsored by the Hispanic College Fund? Visit: www.hispanicfund.org. Who knows, you might be able to win enough to fund your future.
Watch as these students have fun interacting (and laughing,
dancing, & performing) at the Hispanic Youth Symposium in Dallas:
Video edited by Christy V.
Watch students talk about their dreams and goals
in this promo video for the HYS:
Video edited by Michele Houston