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“After School Matters…it really does.” – Maggie Daley, Founder
Almost 30 years ago, then-Chicago First Lady Maggie Daley and former Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs Commissioner Lois Weisberg started an organization to empower and engage teenagers after the school day ended. This initiative grew into After School Matters, an internationally recognized apprenticeship model helping teens explore avenues of interest they otherwise wouldn’t be able to experience.
These programs instill confidence in teens, provide a sense of community, and contribute to their personal and academic success, all while addressing the challenges they face on a daily basis. After School Matters’ programs empower Chicago’s youth to not only better themselves but also their communities, creating a better city for all Chicagoans. Through the support of local and national partners, teens, and communities across the city, After School Matters has reached more than 300,000 Chicago students.
We are proud to feature After School Matters on our mural and highlight the positive impact this organization makes on our city. The variety of bright colors throughout the panels reflects the nearly 19,000 diverse teens who participate in programs across the city each year. On the mural, young people are depicted in some of the various programs After School Matters offers, allowing teens to find their passion and their future. The Chicago skyline in the background shows how After School Matters programs touch almost every part of the city, empowering students to better themselves and their communities, creating a stronger Chicago for everyone.
On February 10, 2020, the spring programming session kicks off, and After School Matters teens will participate in more than 400 programs in the arts, communications, leadership, sports, and STEM offered at locations across Chicago, including downtown at Gallery 37 Center for the Arts and the Karyn Lutz Center for After School Matters in Belmont Cragin. This summer, the After School Matters at Gately Park will open in the Pullman and Roseland neighborhoods, allowing the team to serve more teens on the south side of Chicago and give them the opportunity to learn and grow in a safe space.
The mission of After School Matters is one Wintrust has supported for years through volunteer and mentorship opportunities. This past summer, After School Matters teens had the opportunity to visit Wintrust offices for a workshop on resume writing and mock interviews with seasoned professionals. We look forward to partnering again, soon!