A program offering Philadelphia residents aged 14 to 19 free admission and youth-oriented programs at major city museums is expanding after drawing more than 10 times the expected participation in its first year, including a strong turnout from minority and low-income communities, The Philadelphia Inquirer writes.
More than 11,000 teens have taken part in the Students at Museums in Philly, or Stamp, program, which in its first year included a dozen of the city's biggest and most popular cultural institutions. Three more museums joined for the second year, which kicked off Wednesday.
According to data from the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, which is administering the program, 58 percent of participating youths are African-American or Latino and 47 percent come from "economically disadvantaged households." "I think it shows teens really want to engage in the cultural sector, and taking away the cost barrier makes that possible," said Nicole Allen, the alliance's director of policy and community engagement.