*Grammy-award-winning artist, Kelly Rowland was on hand yesterday (03/03/22)for the kickoff of the 15th annual Disney Dreamers Academy program. The Disney Dreamers Academy is a mentorship program for students in underrepresented communities. 100 Black and underrepresented high school students and teens throughout the United States are selected each year to participate. The goal of the program is to expose those students to opportunities and access to mentors that would likely not be available to them. The program aims to broaden career awareness and create exclusive enrichment opportunities for those selected.
Rowland is this year’s program ambassador, one of its mentors, and an advocate for the 2022 Dreamers: “Mentorship is an experience I treasure, and the opportunity to invest my time into these students is incredible,” Rowland said. “I’m excited to work with them and watch how they grow throughout the program.”
The kickoff celebration included a Cavalcade – a parade for the Dreamers at Magic Kingdom Park. Rowland and guests were driven in a white classic convertible limousine, while excited Academy participants walked gleefully waving Disney Dreamers Academy flags and showcasing hometown signs.
At the end of the Cavalcade, Rowland met with media in Magic Kingdom to share her thoughts on the program and how it inspires her.
“I am inspired by others and being a part of the beginning of their journey”, says Rowland. “You know and if there is anything that I can impart on them [the Dreamers] great, but to just listen to them, I know that they are going to touch me in some sort of way and inspire me in some sort of way. But to just listen to them, I know that they are I know that they will. Rowland goes on to say, “To watch all of these big, brilliant young minds come out here and have a focus and a goal. I am honored to be a part of such incredible energy and share space with them.”
According to Disney representatives, the Disney Dreamers Academy program is an important part of Disney’s commitment to supporting diverse communities, such as Black America, by encouraging the next generation to think big and to carry what they learn with them back home, so they can relentlessly pursue their dreams and make a difference in the lives of others.
Over the years, Disney Dreamers Academy has inspired more than 1,300 students from across the country. Graduates of the program have gone on to become doctors, engineers, performing artists, entrepreneurs and more, and some have transitioned into mentors to the Disney Dreamers.