The MOCAD Teen Council is the collective voices of young leaders and acts as a platform for inspiration and empowerment of youth in metro Detroit. Teen Council members are change makers within the city and state by reinforcing MOCAD’s mission through a variety of involvement, including: teen nights, workshops, Family Day, and the ESB/SKS Junior Docent program. Teen Council members plan and lead community outreach events for teens throughout the city, contributing to MOCAD social media promotion and becoming vanguards within their community. The Teen Council meets weekly and communicates throughout the year to plan and work on its initiatives and events. Members of the Teen Council participate in activities including college tours, financial workshops, portfolio reviews, and museum and gallery visits to prepare for a post secondary school experience and foster professional development.


These events are entirely teen driven, empowering youth and giving teens the responsibility to offer enrichment activities for their peers. MOCAD provides the space for teens to make decisions and work together in a group. Teens also developed life, logic and reasoning skills by figuring out what is most engaging for their peers, developing a budget, executing the plans and reflecting on the completed events. Teen nights also make MOCAD an evening activity and destination spot for youth. Teens view MOCAD as a place in the community where fun things are happening for them. Teen nights are weekend activities so teens can have a safe, engaging time with their friends while participating in educational and literacy based activities.


Pretty/Ugly: Teen Art Exhibition Opening + Open Mic Night
Teen Lock-In

Workshops provide college readiness and humanities based training for innovation. They operate as free monthly events for teens looking to enhance their artistic skills. These development classes provide students and their peers with a curriculum to individually explore creative pathways and prepare for future education after high school. The workshops focus on helping students develop and demonstrate the use and mastery of advanced concepts, formal language, design, and materials. MOCAD workshops also encourage youth to strengthen visual literacy and help them demonstrate problem-solving skills by providing a step-by-step approach to specific issues in projects.


Infinite Patterns with Molly Aubry
Detroit IS Science-Fiction Songwriting with Antea Shelton

Youth literacy programs have helped to foster creative discourse between students and engage youth development through self-assured articulation. Over the last year, MOCAD has focused on youth literacy programs by hosting partner programs and creating unique curriculums with a focus on reading and writing. Thanks to these partnerships, we have inspired over 15,000 young writers to think broadly, create bravely, and share their voices with the wider community in a nurturing safe space. MOCAD hosts over twenty schools and organizations across Michigan to compete for the state title poetry slam and has helped transformed the lives of future leaders. Youth literacy programs at MOCAD enable learners to master content, become more self-directed, extend their investigations of personal interests, and assume greater control over their own learning.


Detroit Youth Poetry Slam
InsideOut: Louder than a Bomb

Camps are more than the typical supervised program. They are multi-day development opportunities that instill values of teamwork, collaboration, and personal responsibility within a healthy environment. These curriculum focused enrichment programs team up established professionals with young entrepreneurs looking to expand their skills in a variety of fields. Working together, teens build character, confidence and skills through a range of arts, music, fashion, and cultural activities. These camps foster personal growth and offer unique experiences in a highly supportive setting. Here, students can accomplish daily tasks and create memories that last a lifetime.

2018 CAMPS:

Hip Hop Architecture Camp
Art Babes: Collaborative Adornment and Fashion Gallery
Sugar Hill Clay Studio

The ESB/SKS Junior Docent Program provides middle and high school students with first hand learning experiences that are unique to MOCAD and its exhibitions. It increases youth understanding of and vocabulary for the visual arts while at the same time providing an opportunity for teens to interact with the public. The primary goal of this program is to promote a continued interest in exhibitions at MOCAD and to build confidence through visual and written responses to current exhibitions. The ESB/SKS Junior Docent Program also exposes youth to humanities and education-related careers by observing, discussing, and becoming experts in age appropriate exhibitions. ESB/SKS Junior Docents have become leaders in MOCAD and in their community by gaining a wider range of knowledge about art, in and outside of Detroit.

Participants in the ESB/SKS Junior Docent Program have moved on to higher education at Michigan State University, University of Michigan, Columbia University, and many other prestigious colleges and universities.

Family Days are free creative and education-based days that focus on themes related to MOCAD exhibitions. These family centered events give children and their adults a chance to celebrate the meaning of being a family and spend quality time with their loved ones. By participating in fun activities together at MOCAD, Family Day provides bonding moments with family connection. These activities reinforce contributions to the world by fostering a strong sense of wellbeing, and help to create communities where families are the core and fundamental pillars of society.


Kevin Kammeraad + Friends Puppet Theater
Merry Making
Family Day at Sidewalk Festival for the Performing Arts

MOCAD’s Outta Here program exposes students to different cultural offerings, spaces, and eras in a meaningful and engaging way. It encourages teens to deepen their social and historical knowledge by offering key cultural opportunities to meet with arts professionals, and engage with artists, designers, and other cultural producers. Field trips stimulate students’ reasoning and critical thinking skills by introducing STEAM concepts that invite students to learn and understand places differently and gain new appreciations for different environments.

These fun and captivating outings allow youth to connect meaningfully with the working world and encourage higher career aspirations.


ICA Boston
Michigan State University
Cranbrook Academy of Art Museum
Detroit Institute of Art
Signal Return/Eastern Market
Midtown Galleries
Detroit Public Theater

The K-12 Advisory Board consists of 8 to 12 educators from the tri-county area and provides MOCAD Youth Programs with relevant information, feedback, and evaluation regarding student needs for enrichment and research-based educational outreach.

These education professionals serve as a sounding board for innovative programs to engage youth within the arts and align our education goals with current curriculum. Board members discuss effectiveness of youth programs for educational standards, assist in planning events that engage youth in the arts, and evaluate past programs. The K-12 Board reinforces MOCAD Youth Programs and helps strengthen MOCAD’s service to the community at large.

Hip Hop Architecture Camp™ comes to MOCAD

D-Artist Studio: Tiff Massey

D-Artist Studio: Scott Hocking

MOCAD Teen Council

Teen Council

MOCAD Teen Council

MOCAD Youth Programs are graciously funded by