Dear Virtue Foundation,
My name is Corin Browne and I am the Media Arts teacher at Templeton Secondary School in East Vancouver. In my program we have over 250 students studying and producing media, including our advanced narrative film production program – the After School Film Program. Since 2001, the films produced in our Program have consistently garnered awards and recognition in provincial and international film festivals. We work hard to nurture young women and two of our filmmakers have received the British Columbia Student Film Festival's Most Promising Filmmaker Award in recognition of their outstanding work over consecutive years. Our films have been nominated for 4 years in a row for Best International Film at the All-American High School Film Festival in New York City, the largest student film festival in the world. Our students continue on to study media and film in post-secondary and most make their careers in the creative arts industries. Many of our students face significant barriers to success based on their gender, race, sexuality, economic status or school performance. Despite the structural inequities that face them, our students work hard to build a community of kindness, critical awareness and excellence within our program. They work hard and continue to support each other, and us, long after they graduate. One of our proudest achievements is the high level of participation we have from our alumni. A former Principal at Templeton described this as our "culture of return" as Templeton Graduates return to mentor, advise and support current students.
This culture of mentorship and guidance is where our program aligns so strongly with the Virtue Foundation. We have been incredibly fortunate to have the support of Danny Virtue and the Virtue Foundation since the beginning of our Program. Every year, without fail, Danny Virtue creates multiple opportunities for our students to learn from him and other film industry professionals. He visits our classroom for open-ended and fascinating Q & A sessions, schedules small group discussions for young people in production, works closely with us to connect students with mentors and welcomes us to his ranch for both small student productions and an incredible industry showcase day every summer. Our students, graduates and mentors benefit both educationally and emotionally from this sustained relationship. The Virtue Foundation's ongoing mentorship encourages our students to develop professional habits and practice the important work ethic necessary for the creative arts industry. And we are especially thrilled that an entire generation of young filmmakers that graduate from our program equate success in the film industry with giving back to the community. The Virtue Foundation helps us model this goal beautifully. We are so grateful for Danny Virtue and the Foundation's support of our program and see it as an integral element of the success of our program.
In deepest gratitude,
Media Arts Teacher and Director of Afterschool Film Program
Templeton Secondary School
The Virtue Foundation's ongoing mentorship encourages our students to develop professional habits and practice the important work ethic necessary for the creative arts industry.