The Arts and Music Programs for Education in Detention Centers (AMPED) is a music mentorship program that connects Northwestern students with incarcerated young men at the Cook County Juvenile Temporary Detention Center (JTDC). Developed in collaboration with faculty and graduate students at the Bienen School of Music, AMPED combines detailed lessons, one-on-one instruction, and supplementary programming, to create opportunities for shared learning and authentic relationships.
AMPED is a yearlong program that begins with a comprehensive mentor training program in the fall. AMPED Northwestern students learn basic music composition and GarageBand techniques. Recognizing the importance of relationship building, mentors also discuss youth development frameworks and strategies for connecting with the population of focus. Together, these trainings ensure that Northwestern students enter the classroom with the knowledge and skills necessary to provide one-on-one attention and support to the young men in the program.
Composition classes and practice sessions begin in January and continue throughout the winter and spring quarters, concluding with a “listening party” for students to share the work they composed and produced. JTDC students’ families and friends, as well as AMPED supporters, are invited to attend.