From left: Levi Landis, government director of GoggleWorks Center for the Arts, Cammie Harris, government director of ReadingFilmFEST, Tracy Schott, board president and inventive director of ReadingFilmFEST, and Dr. Rodney Ridley, vp, interim dean of the College of STEAM and chief working officer O’Pake Institute for Economic Development & Entrepreneurship
O’Pake Institute gives enterprise providers as a part of arts enlargement
Alvernia University partners with ReadingFilmFEST to develop artwork choices for the Reading and better Berks County group. The college’s college students, college and employees will present enterprise consulting providers by way of the O’Pake Institute for Economic Development and Entrepreneurship’s student-powered entrepreneurial lab.
“Creating a vibrant arts setting downtown is an important side of the Reading CollegeTowne technique,” mentioned Alvernia University President John R. Loyack. “The renaissance of downtown received’t attain its full potential till we’re celebrating the native cultures by way of the humanities.”
In early 2021, ReadingFilmFEST grew to become its personal entity, establishing a board of administrators and an advisory council, together with previous contributors, organizers, and group leaders. The partnership will permit Alvernia college students to help this transition by aiding the movie competition improve its marketing strategy and advertising methods for its numerous programming.
“Arts is the spine of life-long studying, vital to the way forward for the college and can assist result in the improved financial improvement of the area,” mentioned Vice President, Interim Dean of the College of STEAM & Chief Operating Officer O’Pake Institute for Economic Development & Entrepreneurship Rodney Ridley. “We sit up for serving to to create an arts-enhanced look that represents the tradition of Reading, and I’m excited for my new function as a member of the advisory council.”
Now in its seventh 12 months, the competition continues to help rising filmmakers, improve native artwork tradition and encourage spending in the local people. The group not too long ago introduced a $35,000 grant from the Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development to help the competition’s improvement initiatives, together with manufacturing, advertising and promotion and year-round administrative bills.
“ReadingFilmFEST is inspired by the unified help and collaboration inside the group to construct a extra sturdy, extra vibrant Reading post-COVID,” mentioned Reading Film Festival Executive Director Cammie Harris. “Our focus as a brand new nonprofit is to create an much more resilient, sustainable, and inclusive movie group and we thank Alvernia for his or her dedication to this imaginative and prescient.”
The O’Pake entrepreneurial lab has already served over 50 purchasers since its launch final 12 months and continues to assist new companies navigate the challenges led to by the COVID-19 pandemic.
O’Pake serves because the catalyst for instructional and enterprise enlargement in heart metropolis Reading. In addition to the partnership with the Reading Film Festival, O’Pake has secured partnerships with SCORE Berks Schuylkill Chapter, Lehigh Valley Angel Investors, Kutztown University’s Small Business Development Center and Ben Franklin Technology Partners of Northeastern Pennsylvania, in addition to the institute’s preliminary group of sponsors, Pepsi®, Customers Bank, the Wyomissing Foundation, RKL, LLP, Visions Federal Credit Union and the Berks Alliance.
In January, Alvernia began a $20 million renovation venture on its newly acquired constructing at 401 Penn Street, which can function the hub of Reading CollegeTowne, a strategic mannequin for financial improvement in downtown. The downtown location, the place the brand new O’Pake choices will function, is slated to open in August 2021.
ReadingFilmFEST grew out of ReadingFilm, the area’s movie fee, to develop into a longtime nonprofit group situated on the GoggleWorks Center for the Arts in Reading, Pennsylvania. The competition continues to advertise the world as a location and vacation spot for movie and media manufacturing, constructing the group by way of occasions and programming and cultivating the event of a regional movie business. ReadingFilmFEST creates programming all year long for audiences, college students and filmmakers, culminating in a four-day worldwide movie competition every fall. FilmFreeway featured ReadingFilmFEST on its Top 100 Film Festivals. In the previous, the competition has generated filmmakers from throughout the United States, Canada, Great Britain, Iran and Columbia.