THE INSIDE SCOOP
400 FORWARD was named in light of the 400th living African American woman recently becoming a licensed architect in 2017 (out of over 115,000 total licensed in the US). Did you know women represent 20% of licensed architects, and black women only .3%? This new initiative aims to seek out and support the next 400 licensed women architects with an underlying focus on African American girls through exposure, mentorship, and financial assistance.
400 FORWARD’s Mission: to uplift girls by giving them the tools they need to address social issues created by the unjust built environments of our inner-city communities.
MENTORSHIP + OUTREACH
We provide free art & architectural summer camps and workshops that feature local city-builders, makers, artists, musicians, and dancers, creating presentations and art installations. We provide participation in summer festivals and design summits hosted in Detroit showcasing the work of the youth. We connect girls to mentors in cities across the country.
Through the use of technology to tell stories of discussing the use of the spaces around them, we can connect communities to companies and organizations doing work in their neighborhood. In the words of city-builder Jay Pitter: Urban Development should not be something happening *to* you. We have the power and knowledge to be directly involved.
SCHOLARSHIP + FINANCIAL SUPPORT
Financial issues can be a major barrier to the success of a student reaching their full potential. 400 FORWARD has direct access to connecting students to assistance, scholarships and wrap around services, and providing study material and licensing exams for African American women in architecture. The cost of architectural licensing exams is a total of $1,410 alone.
An initiative of the Urban Arts Collective (a nonprofit organization), 400 FORWARD has been launched as a comprehensive program which introduces young girls to architecture, provides scholarships and wrap around services to college students, and pays for study material and licensing exams for African American women in architecture.
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THE FUTURE IS IN GOOD HANDS
Detroit School of Arts High School | Class of 2021