USITT’s Gateway Program is a mentorship opportunity for students from underrepresented populations within our industry. A professional mentor for a similar background and career path will guide and maximize each mentee’s experience at the USITT Annual Conference & Stage Expo.
Like many organizations, USITT recognizes the opportunity of the current circumstances to examine our efforts to strengthen diversity, equity, and inclusion in the live entertainment industry. In light of our inability to gather in person we have decided to pause our successful Gateway Program; launched in 2014, which connects diverse emerging professionals with established industry mentors. Reluctantly, we will not convene new mentees at either the 2021 or 2022 conferences. During this time, we will focus on reconnecting with past Gateway Program participants as well as forging broader connections within USITT and across the live entertainment industry.
The 2022 Conference is scheduled to include an in-person Gateway Program family reunion focusing on community and celebrating this inclusive professional network that has formed over the last seven years. USITT will gather a new set of Gateway Program mentors and mentees at the 2023 Conference.
We call together this diverse network of theatre makers to examine past successes and shortcomings in our efforts to mentor a new generation that more accurately represents the diversity of the audiences we aim to serve and to create a more inclusive and equitable industry. During the 2021 and 2022 conferences, USITT will continue to offer sessions that focus on education, outreach, and activism; these vital events will be open to any and all conference participants.Those who want to help support USITT in its equity, diversity, and inclusion efforts can do so by contributing to the Tayneshia Jefferson Fund for Inclusion HERE. You may learn about all USITT donor opportunities HERE.