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posted: 6/12/2012 3:00 PM

Kickoff event Wednesday for new arts center

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Organizers of the Fox Performing Arts Center will hold a kickoff event at 6 p.m. Wednesday, June 13, at Otto Engineering, 11 W. Main St., Carpentersville.

The Fox Performing Arts Center is planned as a re-purposing of the former Ace Hardware building in West Dundee.

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According to the website, "The goal of the proposed Fox Performing Arts Center is to provide a high quality performing arts venue for rent to the various theater, dance, film and art organizations, school districts and park districts within a 30-minute driving radius. We will also provide an 'in-house' educational program for a children's theater, music and arts program."

The initial fundraising goal is $500,000 by Aug. 1. The public is invited to the kickoff event, but an RSVP is requested. For details, visit foxartscenter.com.

Representing young women: After providing a voice for Elgin Area School District U-46 students on the district's school board, Streamwood High School graduate Jacqueline Hernandez was selected to represent young women globally during the first ANNpower Vital Voices Leadership Forum. The three-day conference was held June 4-7 in Washington, D.C.

The ANNpower Vital Voices Initiative, in partnership with ANN, Inc., the parent company of Ann Taylor and LOFT, empowers young women from across the country to invest in their communities and affect global progress.

The selected students network with entrepreneurs, political and social leaders during the conference and have the opportunity to take what they learned back to their communities to improve the lives of others.

Martinez, who will be attending DePaul University in Chicago in the fall to study public policy, served as the student adviser to the school board for the 2011-2012 school year.

A boost for Upward Bound: An Elgin Community College program that provides low-income high school students and first-generation high school students with after school tutoring, activities, workshops and advising services has received a $1.5 million grant from the U.S. Department of Education.

The Upward Bound Program will be funded for another five years and an additional 16 students will have the opportunity to participate.

During the summer, ninth- and 10th-grade students participate in a six-week session of noncredit ECC courses that provide skill development and academic preparation, while high school juniors and seniors can take college credit classes.

In a news release, Bruce Austin, associate dean of TRIO programs, said the grant represents a 5 percent increase over the previous grant. The funds will be distributed in $300,307 increments. Previously, the college's TRIO programs received grants totaling $3.27 million from the U.S. Department of Education.

TRIO program encourages and assists traditionally underrepresented students to succeed in college, graduate and move on to participate more fully in America's economic and social life, ECC's website states.

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