The Terra Academy for The Arts (TAFTA) held its annual graduation ceremony on Tuesday, 27th of February, 2024, at the headquarters located at Plot 1376, Tiamiyu Savage Street, Victoria Island, Lagos State. The academy, in partnership with the Mastercard Foundation, graduated a total of 16,000 students from Cohort 2 to Cohort 5, totaling 19,000 students over the past 2 years at the ceremony.

The event commenced with the procession of the graduands into the Hall, led by the Academy Lead (Joseph Umoibom) and the Senior Program Manager (Olukayode Olusope), while the graduands followed in arrangement. The students were enveloped in a joyful atmosphere for such an incredible feat achieved, and the whole auditorium was filled with merriment and celebration.

The academic lead opened the event with a welcome speech, congratulating the graduands for their commitment to the success of the day. He reiterated that their hard work and consistency had paid off, and the event was proof of their provided skill in creativity. He also admonished the graduands to make positive impacts in the world with all the training acquired and certificates earned from Terra Academy for the Arts.

Founder’s Speech – Bolanle Austen-Peters

Bolanle Austen-Peters, the founder of the Terra Academy for The Arts, in her opening speech, congratulated the graduands and appreciated all the guests present, including the Mastercard Foundation, the grand partner of the academy. Bolanle expressed her heartfelt joy to be at the academy’s second anniversary and how she has committed to the vision of impacting society using the academy as a tool for developing the creative industry.

Mrs. Austen-Peters again reaffirmed the vision and mission of the academy and the purpose of its establishment, which was in accordance with the mission of the academy’s grand partners, The Mastercard Foundation. She said the academy started like a dream, but today in less than 2 years, the academy has successfully reached out to 19,000 students across the nation in 3 different states; Lagos, Ogun, and Kano States.

She encouraged the students not to give up on whatever their dreams are and to use the skills acquired during the course of the program to invent new ideas in the creative world. Collaboration is the soul of Arts; there is no island in the creative sector. You all must learn how to collaborate with others to achieve the best. “Everything I have learned today, I learned through hard work and studying those who have gone ahead of me,” says the award-winning Director and Founder of Terra Academy for The Arts. She acknowledged the consistent support and efficient efforts of the Mastercard Foundation to achieve the dreams of the academy and how it has positively impacted the lives of the students.

Impact Stories from the Students

Across the three states in Nigeria (Kano, Lagos, and Ogun), each student from these locations was interviewed prior to the graduation day to hear their general impression about TAFTA and the impact of the academy on them. These were displayed on the screen for the audience, and the testimonies from the video were mind-blowing. The students partook in various courses that have helped their today’s careers such as Animation, Scriptwriting, and Arts Business and Entrepreneurship.

Presentation by TAFTA Students

The alumni and other students of the academy presented a Musical-Drama that lasted for 30 minutes with choreographed dances. However, it is important to mention that all that goes into the presentation of the performance was handled by TAFTA students from directing to performance, including costumes, sound, light, and stage management. Surprising right? That’s exactly what TAFTA does for you.

Our Guest Speakers

  1. Prof. Folashade Tolulope Ogunsola, Vice Chancellor, University of Lagos.

  2. Mrs. Joke Silva Jacobs, Nollywood Veteran Actress.

Partner’s Presence

The Mastercard Foundation was present at the event with their representatives while a video clip of an address by the Country lead in absentia was displayed on the big screen at the event. This is to establish the mutual relationship between the two partners and how collaboration has improved the aim of the occasion.