U.S. to launch initiatives to empower writers, Nigerian music artistes, others

In a bid to strengthen its ties with Nigeria, the U.S. government says it will be launching different initiatives to empower writers, TV producers, actors, music artists, and Nigerian students.

Lee Satterfield, Assistant Secretary of the State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, said this during an interview session at the American Corner located at Vibranium Valley Tech City, Ikeja, on Wednesday evening.

She said that creating empowerment opportunities would help bridge the gap between the Hollywood and Nollywood music industries, among others, by sharing resources.

According to her, the U.S. wants TV producers to come to the United States to be mentored by American writers and producers at the University of Southern California (USC) Cinematic Art.

Satterfield said the initiative, which was an amazing programme, would produce incredible talents.

She added that the U.S. would also be granting writers from Nigeria the opportunity to come and collaborate with American writers to help establish television shows.

Satterfield said this would be done by seeing them through production and different phases of the creative process.

On music, the U.S. official said: “We will be partnering with brands to bring African music industry professionals to Los Angeles to be mentored by recording academy members so that they can network.

“We are also launching a community college initiative to bring Nigerians to the United States to study.

“Providing economic opportunities and access to education is critically important; it is both the right and smart thing to do,” Satterfield told NAN.

On investing in women, she said that not including them in businesses was like leaving out half of the world’s population.

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According to Satterfield, providing women access to opportunities is not only good for individuals but also for communities and families.

She said that currently, the U.S. is running different programmes to empower women.

Satterfield said that one of the programmes was the Academy for Women Entrepreneurs, a training course developed at Arizona State University.

According to her, women entrepreneurs go through training and administer it globally by building a community of women who are interested in starting a business.

She added that Nigerians particularly had the spirit of entrepreneurship.

In terms of protecting Nigerian cultural antiques, Satterfield said the U.S. had invested over $1.3 million over the past decade in digitising museums so that there would be a record.

She added that this was also done to stop the illicit trafficking of cultural antiques that was happening all over the world.

Satterfield said that the U.S. and Nigeria recently signed a bilateral cultural property agreement again to preserve the nation’s art collections from smugglers. (NAN)

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