Media Academy [2018]

Media Academy [2018].beats, rhymes & life

The Media Academy provides Madison teens the opportunity to work with music and film industry professionals on the development and publishing of music for social justice. By pairing teens with adult mentors to work on group-oriented and self-guided digital learning projects of interest to them, this 8-week Summer course is prepared to produce beats, lyrics, music videos, documentaries, DVDs/CDs, package design, marketing and promotional plans, and live performances.

During the summer of 2018, north side teenagers chose an album release as their featured project.

Thank you to the many other artists, educators and activists who made the 2018 Media Academy possible, including:

Madison Public Library's Media Academy with community partners Urban Community Arts Network, M.O.D. Media, Oddly Arranged Media, Public Library Association
Rob "Rob Dz" Franklin
Urban Community Arts Network
M.O.D. Media
Oddly Arranged Media
Steve Potter
Jose Ornelas
Carlos Guzman
Allison Lenz
Karen Reece
Corey Whitmore
Richard Jones, Jr.
Terrence Thompson
Otto Smith
Jalen McCullough
Amadou Kromah
Trent Miller
Carlee Latimer
Will Glenn
Marc Gannon
Tana Elias
Warner Park Community Recreation Center
Public Library Association
Madison Public Library Foundation
2018 Media Academy Album: "The Book of Eli" by Eli Blakely

The album, "The [Note]book Of Eli", was a release from aspiring artist and 2018 Public Library Association iii intern, Eli Blakely. Raised on Madison’s north side, Blakely was the youth leader and driving force behind putting together a music project that took on several relevant social topics, including addressing youth violence. The project exclusively featured musical and video production from other Media Academy teen participants.


READ Eli's lyrics for "Committed", the first song on the album "The (Note)book of Eli".


Picture of music video shoot for the song, "Committed", from the Media Academy album, "The [Note]book of Eli"
This MUSIC VIDEO was shot and edited by Media Academy teen participant, @PRP_ALE.
PLA iii!

Eli says:

"I would say this internship taught me a lot about libraries, a lot about my community and a lot about myself. I would encourage everyone to invest your everything into the things you care about. And that is why I chose to make a music video for my song "Committed", because it is about me growing up from a young kid to now, and just how I feel about succeeding in life and what the community should do for its people. "

The Media Academy internship was an opportunity made possible by the Public Library Association's Inclusive Internship Initiative (iii!). The overarching goal of iii! is to introduce students from diverse backgrounds to careers in librarianship. Through a summer-long mentored learning project, library mentors engage with the intern on multiple facets of library life, from administration to programming to user services. Along with the local opportunities, all 50 PLA ii Interns from across the country had opportunities to connect and learn from one another during the kickoff in Washington, D.C. and the wrap up in Chicago, IL.  

Madison Public Library was proud to host Eli Blakely for the 2018 PLA iii internship.

Madison Public Library's Media Academy intern, Eli Blakely, sponsored by the Public Library Association's Inclusive Internship Initiative

Eli attending a PLA iii kickoff session at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.


Public Library Association iii 2018 Inclusive Internship Initiative, Washington, D.C.
Mentor (Rob "Rob Dz" Franklin) and mentee standing proud at Union Station while attending the PLA iii kickoff in Washington, D.C.
Picture of Amadou Kromah leading a group photography lesson.
Camera instructions from local photographer, Amadou Kromah.
Picture of the crew on a Bucky Badger hunt.
Navigating the bus system to hunt down, photograph and document the "Bucky's On Parade".
Picture of PLA intern, Eli Blakely, working on beat production with another student.
Eli works with teen producer, Jonathan, to explore what type of beats they are looking to create for the album.
Picture of PLA intern, Eli Blakely, in a training session with MPL Librarian, Liz Amundson.
Getting his library science on with Librarian, Liz Amundson.



Knowledge Reigned Supreme

Check out what happened in the previous 2017 Media Academy.

Picture of music video shoot for 2017 Media Academy