Participating in Ryman Arts has been one of the most influential experiences in my life. I was always told that I was a great artist, but unfortunately due to my family’s income, I was never able to participate in any more than the art classes available at my high school. My high school AP studio art teacher briefly introduced me to Ryman Arts and encouraged me to apply, but at the time I really did not know what I was getting myself in to. I decided to apply, and to my surprise was accepted. I did not expect to walk away with the experience that I had at Ryman.
I was confronted by a class full of talented young artists led by an enthusiastic teacher that was very passionate about the fine arts. It was interesting to be in a room so diverse, considering that my high school is majority Hispanic like myself. I was excited by all the materials that Ryman Arts was able to provide us; I had never used white conte or water color pencils and so I was able to experience different mediums of art making. Our instructors were so dedicated to making us better students, that I became even more inclined to apply to college as an art major.
I got to make friends with backgrounds from Lithuania and South Korea, an experience that I would almost never have unless I went to college. I had the opportunity to feel like a college student in being allowed to have classes on a college campus. Being surrounded by optimistic peers and dedicated instructors are just some reasons why I would like to extend my support for Ryman Arts. For a student like myself to experience an undergraduate type of education as a high school student, was truly a beneficial experience for me to be able to share with the students I mentor now. As an aspiring professional in education, I hope to be able to see Ryman Arts continue for many years, so that it can continue to contribute to a student’s art education, cultural appreciation, and connecting students to higher education.
After increasing Ryman Arts outreach efforts with a position as Site & Outreach Coordinator, Frank has recently accepted a full time position at Santiago Canyon College!