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Urban Gateways, A Community Partner to Chicago


Urban Gateways is one of the largest and most comprehensive arts education organizations in the country. We provide in- and out-of-school arts programming to more than 100,000 children in metropolitan Chicago every year.  


Urban Gateways’ mission is to ignite the full creative potential of all young people. We accomplish that mission by promoting and fostering learning in and through the arts within the Chicago metropolitan area.


Urban Gateways offers custom-designed programming in the literary, performing, media and visual arts that range from one-time exposure opportunities to full immersion “Arts-Wired Schools.”  An Arts-Wired School offers the following core programs:

Schools can select any of these services individually or combine them in custom packages. Schools interested in a slightly less intensive partnership can participate in Urban Gateways Cultural Education Program or Community Schools Program.


All of our arts programming is developed and executed with these core values in mind:

  • Equitable access to the arts - We believe that all children must have the opportunity to be engaged in meaningful artistic experiences on an ongoing basis.
  • Diversity - We believe that broad forms of creative expression enrich the learning process.  Our artists offer a wide range of cultural and stylistic traditions, and we work tirelessly to meet the unique needs of the diverse schools and communities we serve.
  • Artist as educator - We believe the artist brings unique perspectives and skills to the learning process that catalyze young people’s development in profound ways. 
  • Collaboration - We believe in collective and shared responsibility in furthering arts education for our young people.  Urban Gateways partners with schools, community groups and other organizations to increase the effectiveness and scope of our programming.

Posted in Arts and Culture