U.S Govt Announces 3 New Initiatives For Nigeria’s Creative Sector

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U.S Govt Announces Three New Initiatives For Nigeria’s Creative Sector

The U.S. government, on Wednesday announced three new opportunities for Nigerians in the creative economy sector.

Ms. Lee Satterfield, U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs made the announcement while delivering a foreign policy speech at the University of Lagos.

She is currently in Nigeria on an official visit till March 22.

Satterfield, in her remarks, underscored the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to deepening educational and cultural ties between Nigeria and the U.S..

“Today, I want to announce the launch of the Africa Creative TV(ACTV) initiative.

“It’s a new professional development programme that will focus on TV writers, producers and just below the line professionals to create this industry and grow even stronger the collaboration between our two countries.

“ACTV is in a partnership with the University of Southern California’s School of Cinematic Arts, and it was created out of the summit for African leaders that President Joe Biden hosted in Washington DC in 2022.”

Satterfield said ACTV would focus on professional development and network building between television writers, producers and those in the technical fields including art direction, cinematography, editing, in line producing among others.

She said the second programme being launched was the American Music Mentorship programme, a partnership between the U.S. and the Recording Academy, The Grammys.

According to her, with the Recording Academy, the U.S. State Department was creating a mentorship opportunity to bring international and mid-career music industry professionals to the U.S. for mentoring and networking opportunities.

This, she said was with an aim to cultivate the music industry ecosystem leveraging the networks of the Recording Academy to grant aids for professional programmes.

The Assistant Secretary also said she was happy to unlock an educational initiative, adding that the U.S. was opening a programme for the creative economy through script to screen process.

“We’re going to select four Nigerian filmmaking students to come for a year in a community college in the United States.

“Film, Television and Music Industries continue to evolve at unprecedented pace and we’re seeing an evermore interconnected world.

“US high tech giants like Google, Meta, Microsoft are heavily investing in Nigeria, supporting development of local tech talent and promoting inclusive economic growth and development.”

According to Satterfield, for over 75 years the U.S. has connected with people through culture, sharing its struggles and successes with the world through movies and music and the country.

This same phenomenon, she said, was currently being seen with Nollywood and Afrobeats.

She said that the U.S. government was supporting Nigeria’s creative industries because they offered economic opportunities for millions of people from Hollywood to Nollywood.

“The heart of our relationship is our people,” Satterfield noted.

Prof. Folasade Ogunsola, Vice Chancellor, University of Lagos said for over five decades, the institution had supported people and scholars from various U.S. programmes and activities.

She noted that there were currently 38 Fulbright scholars in the university of Lagos, adding that the institution was one of top universities for hosting scholars from the U.S.

“As an academic institution, we’re focused on ensuring that we continue to have cross-fertilisation between scholars from all around the world and particularly the U.S.

“The University of Lagos is going to play host to a window on America and we are looking forward to that, which will be another way of cultural exchange,” Ogunsola said.

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By Abia ThinkTank

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