Youth Media Initiative

The ALLIANCE′s Youth Media Initiative programs convene, connect, nurture and sustain strategic development in the Youth Media field.

The Alliance for Media Arts + Culture supports innovative models of practice within the fields of youth media, creative youth development, and media literacy. All of our Youth Media initiative programming uses an intergenerational, co-creation approach as a means to demonstrate the possibilities and impacts of working collaboratively across age.  We provide capacity-building mentorship to organizations, educators, artists and practitioners seeking new opportunities, networking, access to technology and models of community engagement and impact. We also design and produce national and regional conference programs for our partners and members around the world.


Executive Director: Wendy Levy (age 57) | Producer: Jason Wyman (age 42)

The Youth Media Collective Action initiative works to align a network of Youth Media organizations around shared goals, pedagogy, practices, and new approaches to creating art, change and impact. Inspired by the Collective Impact movement, we see Youth Media Collective Action as a pathway to an inclusive, peer-driven national youth media community with diverse practices and a set of shared goals and values.

We began in 2016 with The 50 State Dinner Party Project, and built the initiative through video roundtables, peer coaching, media and case study research for intergenerational leaders, workshops in co-creation and interactive assessment, and the cultivation of intergenerational leadership cohorts, both locally and nationally.

About The 50-State Dinner Party Project:
The Alliance Youth Media Initiative’s Collective Action kicked off with the 50 State Dinner Party Project, which brought youth and adults together to connect, eat, create, and share their desired futures. To date, partner organizations and practitioners have thrown over 15 dinner parties from Portland to New Orleans to Philadelphia to Whitesburg, Kentucky. Dinners are still happening, and you can join our Collective Action Initiative by hosting one in your locality. For more information, check out our Toolkit and email Jason Wyman at if you’d like more information.

Any youth media, creative youth development, or media literacy organization, program, practitioner, educator, or artist is invited to join our growing Youth Media Network. To learn more about any of The Alliance Youth Media Initiatives, please contact Jason Wyman at


Editor in Chief: Myah Overstreet (age 21) | Creative Director: Jason Wyman (age 42)
The Issue #2 Partners: Orange County Library (Hillsborough, NC), Free Spirit Media / Real Chi Youth (Chicago, IL), Open Signal PDX (Portland, OR), Austin Public / Austin Film Society (Austin, TX)

The Issue is an arts + culture magazine, designed to inspire a creative future where we all belong. The Issue is a model of intergenerational collaboration and mutual reciprocity, where diverse voices are artfully represented and joyfully celebrated.

The Issue launched January 2018 with articles including “Beyond the Fast” by Izza Anwar, “Picture This” by Michelle Ciulla Lipkin, and “Vote 16?” an interview with teenagers in San Francisco, Berkeley, and Chicago about why they want to expand the voting age to 16. It also included an illustrated editorial-spread of two pairs of youth and elders in conversation titled, “The Adventure of Age” and an interview and still image spread with Eastern Kentucky filmmaker Oakley Fugate.

The Issue #2 is centered around the people and issues that make a place. With partners in Austin, TX, Portland, OR, Chicago, IL, and Hillsborough, NC, the next issue is a collaborative effort to tell stories that intersect geographies and identities. Each partner organization will be engaging youth, educators, and artists in their locality to generate content that will be edited by The Issue Editorial Board, which includes Aden Suchak, Gabby Taylor, Mason Bissada, and Lindsey Moore, to ensure high quality, engaging, and dynamic content. Guest Artists supporting the youth media practitioners in each town include Anna Maria Luera and Crystal Mason.

Additional content will also be selected from locations and contributors across the nation.

To learn more, email Myah Overstreet at

Read the first issue of THE ISSUE here.


Co-Producers: Gemikia Henderson (age 25) and Jason Wyman (age 42)

Our Youth Media Video Roundtables are a space for youth media, creative youth development, and media literacy practitioners to exchange knowledge and resources about innovative practices. To ground the Video Roundtables in concrete personal, creative, and professional development, The Alliance will co-produce the Video Roundtables with emerging filmmaker and educator Gemikia Henderson. The upcoming Youth Media Video Roundtables will explore:

  • Wednesday, April 25, 2018: How to build sustainable platforms for emerging artists
  • Wednesday, August 29, 2018: How to tell a single story across multiple platforms including video, podcasting, and blogging;
  • Wednesday, October 31, 2018: How to build a supportive environment for creative risk- takingAll Youth Media Video Roundtables are held on Zoom and recorded and shared. The Video Roundtables are held at 11am PT / 12pm MT / 1pm CT / 2pm ET.

To register, email


2017 Partner Organizations: RYSE Youth Center + Appalachian Media Institute

HatchLab Youth partners with youth media organizations to bring together young, emerging artists, and media arts practitioners to explore personal values and intersectional identities, share stories, build connections across geography, and create art + media. For the inaugural HatchLab Youth, The Alliance Youth Media Initiative worked with RYSE Youth Center in Richmond, CA, and Appalachian Media Institute in Whitesburg, KY. Labs were collaboratively developed with adult staff and emerging artists from both organizations. The Alliance Producer Jason Wyman facilitated labs in both Richmond and Whitesburg, and then The Alliance brought both cohorts together in Chicago, IL, for a collaborative HatchLab and the Alliance Youth Media Summit, which was produced with Free Spirit Media and Chicago Youth Voices Network.

Tools + Rescourses Youth Media Intiative

The ALLIANCE + Youth Media Reporter  An interview with co-editors Myah Overstreet + Jason Wyman on the collaborative special issue

The ALLIANCE + Youth Media Reporter An interview with co-editors Myah Overstreet + Jason Wyman on the collaborative special issue

For this Special Issue, all media forms were accepted: audio, photography, essays, lesson plans, videos, fiction, and poetry are all present. And through these forms, a vast array of topics are covered in beautifully different ways, like how music can spark confidence, how African American women need a sanctuary of free expression, how mapping our desired futures can bring communities together.