Special to Reporter

The Texas Commission on the Arts (TCA) is now accepting applications for the 2010 class of the Young Masters scholarship program. The scholarships will help promising young school-aged students in Texas to excel in the arts.

The Young Masters Program will provide exemplary arts students in grades 8-12 with the financial help they need to pursue advanced study in the areas of visual arts, literature, music, theatre, dance and media arts.

Only the most talented young artists will receive the title of Young Master and will be granted $2,500 scholarships per year to further their studies in their chosen arts disciplines. All proposed artistic training programs should be completed during the period of May 1, 2010 through Aug. 31. Students are eligible to receive the scholarship for up to three years, but they must reapply annually. Young Masters scholarships are not available for collegiate study.

“We have seen impressive artistic advancement among Young Masters who attended such prestigious summer programs as the School of Visual Arts in New York, the Chicago Art Institute, Julliard, the American Dance Festival, Ann Reinking’s Broadway Theatre Project and Tanglewood,” said TCA Executive Director Gary Gibbs. “The Commission takes great pride in helping these young people become prominent artists of the next generation.”

All Texas students who are U.S. citizens and who are participating in a school-based program, a summer institute, or a specialized course of study; or who are receiving private lessons from a qualified professional instructor are encouraged to apply. In order to be considered, students must maintain passing grades in all academic areas, and it’s important to note that the applicants compete against a standard of excellence, not each other.

A brief narrative describing an applicant’s course of study and detailing how the student will use the scholarship to advance his/her artistic abilities must accompany all applications. A budget indicating anticipated expenditures will also be required. Applicants must also provide evidence of their previous efforts in the arts by submitting a portfolio, a cassette tape, videotape, slides or some other representation of their creative work.

Applications for the Young Masters program may be obtained by calling TCA at (512) 936-6563 or by visiting http://www.arts.state.tx.us. All applications and support documents must be postmarked by Nov. 15.

Students will be selected by a citizen panel of experts from across the state based on level of potential, level of commitment and quality of their proposed plan of action. Notification of awards for this fourth class of Young Masters will begin in April 2010.

The Young Masters program was created and is funded through the efforts of the Texas Cultural Trust. Young Masters scholarships were made possible by generous contributions from AT&T Foundation, Anheuser-Busch Companies, Applied Materials, Burlington Northern, The Honorable David Dewhurst, Emerson Electric, Mrs. Gene Jones, Mr. George Mitchell, Plum Foundation, Ray C. Fish Foundation, Raytheon, Texas Women for the Arts and Mrs. W.D. Noel.