Cultural Foundation Grant Program
This year, the grant will be awarded to a program or project that supports performing, visual or culinary arts efforts, as well as workforce development initiatives aligning with the hospitality industry in Athens-Clarke County. The scholarship deadline was July 16, 2021.
Each year the Cultural Foundation offers local community groups the opportunity to apply for funding up to $5,000 to aid them in carrying out programming that aligns with the mission of The Cultural Foundation.
Past grant recipients include:
- After Romeo student performance
- Broderick Flanigan Program
- Winterglow performance at the Morton Theatre
- Lyndon House Book Project
- Hilsman Step Team for the Youth Step Show
- Mosaic Art Mural at Cobbham Park
Cultural Foundation Scholarship Program
One of the goals of The Classic Center Cultural Foundation is to support the youth in our community in their continuing study of the arts. One of the ways we achieve this is by awarding annual performing arts scholarships to local high school students and a culinary scholarship to individuals seeking to pursue culinary arts education full-time. The Cultural Foundation also provides funds back to the school arts program of each scholarship recipient.
Instrumental, East Jackson Comprehensive High School
Senior Sheena Lim hopes to one day become a professional musician. She has been recognized for her talents and leadership at District Honors Band and at Georgia All-State since 2019, and for the past two years she has served as drum major for the Pride of the East Side Marching Band. She plans to take her vast knowledge to college next year and minor in Music.
Dance/Drama, North Oconee High School
For Senior Shea Heckman, dance is more than a talent- it's a way of life. A born performer, she has been dancing for 15 years and her involvement in the dramatic arts has taken her to the Georgia Thespian Conference's All State event for the past two years. Nominated to the prestigious Governor's Honor Program for acting in 2020, Shea has a list of performance accolades that have shaped her into the artist she is today. She hopes to major in Psychology and minor in Dance in college next year.
Dance/Drama, Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School
Junior Sarah Brenner has spent her life involved in dance. Beginning at the age of three, she has performed in multiple musical theater performances and just completed her third year of participating in her school's prestigious cirque program. In addition to dance, she enjoys vocal performance and has been a member of her school's choir for the past two years. She hopes to become a physical therapist where she can work with dancers and other athletes and plans to minor in Dance in college.
Mary Claire Hammond
Visual, Oconee County High School
Senior Mary Claire Hammond found art to be a visual expression of her true purpose when she started taking art classes in high school. Currently serving as president of her school's National Honors Society, Mary Claire has won numerous awards as well as been selected as a Georgia Honors Program finalist for her pieces. She has had two pieces selected for the All-State Art Symposium and is in her third year as an exhibitor with Oconee Cultural Arts Foundation's Youth Art Month. She plans to attend the Georgia institute of Technology in the fall, where she will major in Industrial Design to continue her passion for the visual arts.
Vocal, Prince Avenue Christian School
Senior Finn McGinnis has a special knack for entertaining. He is a member of the International Thespian Society and has acted in numerous musical productions throughout his high school career. He has also participated in the Georgia State Literary Meet where he has competed both as a soloist and a member of the men's quartet. Finn will attend Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee, where he plans to double major in Broadcast Journalism and Musical Theater.
Vocal, Rabun Gap-Nocoochee School
Senior Emma Scott dreams of a future on Broadway. She has a wide array of musical theater roles to her name as well as performances with Rabun Gap-Nacoochee School's cirque program and MADFest. Emma plans to attend Oglethorpe University where she will major in Theater and minor in Music in college to fulfill her lifelong dream of being a full-time performer.
Instrumental, Oconee County High School
Senior, Kalani Washington, is a performing arts talent in every way. On the instrumental side, she placed first in the state for 4-H for her performance on bells and has received the award “Most Outstanding Percussionist” twice. In addition, she has sang with 4-H’s Clovers and Company for years, performed in musical theatre roles including those in Shrek the Musical and Urinetown, and participated with her school’s a cappella group for three years. She was also a finalist for the 2020 Governor’s Honors Program in Communicative Arts, which she plans to pursue at Savannah College of Art and Design in the fall as she works to become a screenwriter.
Culinary, Gwinnett Technical College
A current student at Gwinnett Technical College, Hayat Olusanya is working to complete her culinary degree. Although she has worked in the hospitality industry for several years, cooking is her true passion and she found herself seeking to express her creativity through the food she prepares. Hayat draws inspiration from her travels and likes to bring together flavors from around the world. Her goal is to complete her culinary studies, as well as study nutrition, as she works toward a career helping show Americans that both healthy and delicious options can coexist.