Last March I had the honor to attend Disney Dreamers Academy with Steve Harvey and Essence’ Magazine. This awesome program motivates teens to achieve their own particular goals and encourage them on a path to success. Students are involved with many workshops that present the tools they will need to turn dreams into reality.
Each year, in a robust four-day series of events, the Dreamers engage in a wide range of experiences while working hand in hand with community and industry leaders, Disney Cast Members and some of today’s top celebrities. Dreamers not only learn how to motivate themselves, but also how to inspire their friends, families and communities.
Last year, Disney Dreamers Academy launched the Disney Dreamers Academy Champions program aimed to inspire the next generation of Dreamers to pursue their dreams. These talented alumni served as national spokespersons and brand ambassadors for Disney Dreamers Academy, traveling across the country to share Disney Dreamers Academy’s goals and message of dreaming big.
This year, five more gifted alumni were selected to serve as the 2013/2014 Disney Dreamers Academy Champions. Over the course of the year, the new Champions will encourage future Dreamers and empower alumni to continue to aim for success. The Champions will also serve as guest contributors for Disney Dreamers Academy’s social media channels. As Dreamers themselves, the Champions know what it takes to go after their goals – whether it’s in performing arts or learning new languages.
Meet the 2013-2014 Champions
Avery Davis is now a sophomore at Valparaiso University double-majoring in Music and Chinese. He plans on pursuing a Master’s Degree in Educational Studies and desires to teach English as a second language to Chinese students. Avery is a member of the Traditional Chinese Orchestra and is also a volunteer music instructor. He is a gifted photographer with his work being shown in his campus newspaper and Integrated Marketing Department
Brenaea Fairchild is now a sophomore at Princeton University majoring in Spanish with a minor in French. She is also pursuing a certificate in translation and her teacher certification. She wants to transform America’s education system by establishing a network of schools. Brenaea is a member of Princeton’s Gospel Ensemble, and an administrator/choreographer for Dancing to Christ’s Beat. She co-founded Sisterhood, a club dedicated to service.
Ebony Johnson is a senior at East Carolina University majoring in Hospitality Management with a minor in Business Administration. She has been running her own business, Ebby-Cakes, since the age of 15 as a baker and cake decorator. She also plans to manage her own food service establishment after graduation. Ebony has been featured in Sister2Sister magazine, on the Steve Harvey Morning Show, and in her local newspaper.
Michael Balcom is a sophomore at Florida Gulf Coast University majoring in Economics with a minor in Theatre. He made the Dean’s list as a freshman and plans to attend Harvard Law School after graduation. Michael received President Obama’s Volunteer Service Award and is an Eagle Scout. He is a natural performer and his talents include acting, coaching, gymnastics, juggling, cheerleading, comedy hypnosis, and playing the saxophone.
Taylor Carter is a sophomore at Indiana University Northwest with plans to major in Vocal Performance at Ball State School of Music. She aspires to be a professional entertainer on Broadway and beyond. Taylor has played roles in Phantom of the Opera as “Christine Daee” and as “Fantine” in Les Miserables. She is a gold medalist for the NAACP-ACTSO competition and wishes to start a performing arts camp to inspire and motivate others.
Pretty awesome group of young people. I have all my fingers and toes crossed in hopes I am invited back next year!
You can read about my coverage of DDA2013 by clicking on the “Travelin’ Shoes” tab at the top of this page. This event was part of my ‘Grannys Sail Away Adventure’ Trip.