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High School Scholars Shine in ‘Bold & Beautiful’ STEAM After-School Programs Showcase

From fashion and dance to art and design, our STEAM after-school programs high school scholars showcased their talents in this year’s Bold & Beautiful showcase at Salem Community Center. 

Held annually at HCZ, Bold & Beautiful is the culmination of Academy of Arts & Civic Engagement (ACE), Employment & Technology Center (ETC), and Countee Cullen Community Center (CCCC) — STEAM after-school programs that empower our high school scholars with the professional skills and real-world experience to launch careers in arts, technology, media, and more.

“In the future, I’m going to become a pediatrician,” said Aboubacar Jalloh, a scholar in ETC’s pre-med program who demonstrated his suturing skills at Bold & Beautiful. “This program has given me a head start on the path to realizing that dream.”

Celebration of Identity

Bold & Beautiful is more than just a showcase: it’s a “celebration of identity, self-expression, and joy and being able to explore being courageous and fearless,” so say our scholars. 

With the guidance of industry professionals, scholars presented a range of projects reflecting their creative and professional passions: fashion collections, a horror film, interior designs, homemade empanadas, paintings and drawings, and robotics to help people with physical disabilities. Scholars launched Harlem Overheard, HCZ’s premier scholar-lifestyle magazine.

Our CEO Kwame Owusu-Kesse tried out a digital music studio created by scholars that uses technology to autotune a singer’s voice and lay down a backing track. He praised the scholars who “dedicate the school year to creating thoughtful projects that prepare them for future careers.”

“Bold & Beautiful is a testament to their commitment, and I can’t wait to see the path they take as they move into this next stage of their journeys,” he said.

“I love all the hard work our scholars put in throughout the year and seeing it come together in our annual showcase,” said Serina Moya, Managing Director of K-12 HCZ After School Programs and Community Engagement. “This captures their creativity and shows that their dedication truly pays off.”

From the Lab to the Runway

Bold and Beautiful kicked off with an exhibition of STEAM projects and concluded with a fashion show, concert, and dance performances with original choreography.

Scholars took to the runway in fashion collections they designed — ensembles complete with detailed stitching, unique fabrics, and bold, bright colors.

Inspired by the academic approach at many colleges, our Zone High School Programs unlock a learning experience based on a scholar’s “major” or focus area. Scholars enjoy an immersive experience — learning from industry professionals, pursuing real-world projects, and leveraging internship and networking opportunities. The experience paves the path to their future careers.


We believe every child has unlimited potential. We offer a range programs for Central Harlem public schools scholars that empower them to discover their interests, succeed academically, and get support preparing for college and launching successful careers.