Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Florida organizations seek to aide art groups and students through online arts education

Plus on-air TV programming for Orange County residents

The Florida Alliance for Arts Education and the Interactive Academy are making digital online platforms available to the arts community in an effort to restore some of the loss of revenue organizations are experiencing during the COVID 19 outbreak.

Entire families will also benefit from an array of art classes (dance, music, theatre, visual arts, etc.) professionally produced in an unprecedented collaboration with Orange County Arts & Culture Affairs Department and Orange TV. Orange County residents will have the option to watch the classes streaming to their TV or upgrade to having their own interactive Digital Media Room (DMR). Each DMR owner (fees apply) has the option to form a study group and invite 3 friends to join the “room” through webcams, interacting with each other during the class.

Numerous studies have shown that participating in any art form can significantly reduce stress, decrease mental health issues, and increase overall quality of life. With the onset of responses to the COVID 19 outbreak, this is particularly important today. This opportunity gives everyone access to affordable, safe, private, and convenient arts education through a new and immersive approach.

The Florida Alliance for Arts Education’s mission is to “improve, enhance, and promote arts education throughout the state of Florida. It is a non-profit organization with 30 years’ experience working with the Florida Dept. of Education and the Dept. of State Division of Cultural Affairs and is the recipient of a GuideStar Gold Seal of Transparency. 

The FAAE will maintain class scheduling, registration, and course payments. Additional funding generated from enrollment and charitable contributions will allow the FAAE the granting of virtual scholarships to underprivileged families.

Leiland Theriot, the FAAE’s Executive Director, is extending an invitation to art groups to apply at their website

Additionally, Ms. Theriot stated “Our students’ safety is of the utmost importance. Course instructors are screened and the platform is secured for safety and privacy. Students and their families can be assured that the learning environment meets expectations in accordance with the FERPA”.

Terry Olson, head of the Arts & Culture Affairs Department for Orange County, stated that “This program elevates virtual learning to the professional level it deserves.”

Ricardo Canchola, President of the Interactive Academy, noted that “we are committed to deploying the most advanced telepresence platforms today.” Then he added, “It is important to remind students to use an Ethernet portal in order to get smoother internet connectivity.”

Our studio hours run from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Monday through Friday, so space is currently limited to the number of classes we will professionally produce. Nonetheless, we are working on additional programs and times in order to fill art groups teaching needs outside the Central Florida area.

Students can visit the website and browse through an array of lessons that include, but are not limited to: Acting for Dancers, Ballet, Modern Dance, Acting, Singing, Violin, etc. Classes are being added periodically, so make sure to visit the website to view new and exciting courses.

About the Florida Alliance for Arts Education
Since 1981, the Florida Alliance for Arts Education (FAAE) has worked to bring schools and communities together to improve, enhance and promote lifelong learning, in and through the arts, from birth through adulthood.

Arts are essential to the vitality and quality of life in schools and communities. Education is even more powerful when it includes art instruction and broad-based cultural programs.

As the statewide umbrella organization for arts education, FAAE touches thousands of lives each year, serving educators, administrators, students, families, and advocates in rural and urban communities throughout Florida.

FAAE works with leading institutions such as the Florida Department of Education and Florida Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs and supports statewide campaigns such as the Florida Grade-Level Reading Campaign and the Florida Rural Economic Development Initiative.

About the Interactive Academy
The Interactive Academy ( is always evolving as it continues to thrive to become the catalyst to a better world by facilitating the finest online education for mankind. Therefore, we are pleased to be working with reputable organizations to introduce to the world other areas of study beyond the performing arts which are a vital part of human enlightenment in the areas of languages, the arts, science, and technology. 

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

How Augmented Reality Can Save Jobs

With the rise in groundbreaking technologies like augmented reality, or AR, many industries fear the displacement of human workers to make way for digital solutions. However, if history is any precedence (e.g. inventions like the printing press, smartphone, and Internet), the advantages enjoyed from such developments not only outweigh the negatives, but also rarely act as a complete replacement for real manpower. 

All the complaints surrounding technology displacing workers, especially in Silicon Valley, should also be regarded in terms of skillset. The number one reason jobs remain unfilled today is due to lack of experience, with lack of hard and soft skills also ranking within the top five most influential reasons for vacancies. 

In order to address the growing need of more skilled and technology-adept employees, AR applications for work can be just the tool needed to complement human workers. With applications that range from training to enhancing safety on the job, AR technologies can help to solve the conflict between unfilled positions and frustrated people searching for jobs. 

What AR Does
Unlike virtual reality, which puts the user in an entirely unfamiliar environment, augmented reality overlays artificial elements over a real-life setting. Essentially, it enhances the world around you. 

The first example of AR becoming popularized in consumer culture was Pokemon Go. Using just a smartphone, users were able to see Pokemon characters dotting the landscape in front of them through their phone’s screen. This game not only made augmented reality an accessible concept to the masses, but also initiated the development of other AR hardware. Creating unique AR devices can allow the technology to be applied to a variety of industries and effectively help a wider range of employees and enterprises. 

Using Augmented Reality for Training
AR technology provides a means of experiential teaching. Instead of risking the disassociation that often occurs between learning in a classroom and learning on the job, AR allows employees to learn as they work. 

One way this is being accomplished in the robotics sector is by having workers wear AR glasses as they go through training. When working with a new device or machine, the glasses provide an overlay of instruction and information to the user. They can be shown precisely what to do while actually performing the action, instead of learning about what to do hours or days prior to experiencing it. This means that people can quickly pick up and carry out complex work assignments without need to costly or overly complex training, transferring knowledge from experience workers to new hires more efficiently than ever before.

AR for Enterprises
The repeated processes and assembly line-like structure of enterprise manufacturing demands a different solution from AR. It essentially comes down to scaling augmented reality technology and ensuring it applies to all realms of the business. 

In order to accomplish this feat, AR developers must consult with enterprises closely to design solutions that are user-friendly, accomplish the task at hand, and can be measured for continued improvement new applications. Establishing a system by which AR can be adapted for the user and industry is essential.

Augmented reality still has a ways to go before it is implemented on a mass scale for businesses. Already, however, its applications within enterprises and occupations for training employees, enhancing communication, and boosting efficiency are noteworthy. AR may be just the solution we need to fill the void of skilled workers and provide jobs to those searching.

Monday, July 24, 2017

In advertising, marketing diversity needs a boost in Tampa Bay, nationally

TAMPA — Trimeka Benjamin was focused on a career in broadcast journalism when she entered Bethune-Cookman University.

But when Benjamin discovered the beginning salaries for journalists, she switched her major to business.

Today, Benjamin is the chief executive owner of Swim Digital Group, a Tampa-based marketing company.

Read full article

Friday, June 24, 2016

PlanetM aligns with FIMBA on Global Sponsorship Deal

New York City: On June 7, 2016 PlanetM signed an exclusive three year agreement with Federation of International Masters Basketball Association (FIMBA) to represent the global basketball federation in securing international sponsors.

Now in its 25th year, the FIMBA organization is widely acclaimed as the premier senior sports federation in the world.

Under terms of the agreement, PlanetM will be responsible for identifying and negotiating contracts with global and international sponsors whose products and services appeal to FIMBA’s affluent, mature, mobile and physically fit basketball demographic.

Carlos Vassallo, Principal of PlanetM, will work closely with Jim Sweeney, who heads up FIMBA in the USA.

FIMBA President, Ruben Lamas, remarked about FIMBA’s newly forged relationship, “We are excited to work with Carlos Vassallo and PlanetM and believe it is a great step toward an even more successful future for FIMBA.”

PlanetM COO, Carlos Vassallo, shared his enthusiasm about representing FIMBA, “We are thrilled to work with FIMBA and grow their brand globally during this exciting time. They have done a phenomenal job promoting basketball worldwide, engaging players from more than 100 countries”.

FIMBA organizes international basketball tournaments for both men (ages 35+) and women (ages 30+) and promotes an annual maxi or masters basketball day each September. In 2015, the event generated basketball activities in 89 countries.

FIMBA recently hosted Pan Am Games in San Jose, Costa Rica for 157 teams from 19 countries and a European Championship in Belgrade, Serbia for 96 teams from 22 countries.

FIMBA’s 14th bi-annual world championship is scheduled for June 2017. The global event will be held in Montecatini, Italy and is expected to draw 250+ teams from 40+ countries.

About PlanetM
PlanetM is a digitally driven technology and marketing company connecting brands with consumers internationally.

PlanetM’s proprietary technology enables greater brand and fan engagement and can be used across a variety of industries including Sports, Entertainment, Fashion, Travel, Education, Finance among others.

Additionally, PlanetM specializes in event and experiential marketing for global brands. Using a variety of state-of-the art and disruptive applications, PlanetM is able to successfully run multi-lingual and multi-country marketing campaigns.


Jeana Mattei
GM Sports

Carlos Vassallo

Jim Sweeney


Sunday, June 12, 2016

Hispanics will outspend millennials by 2020: Morgan Stanley

Hispanic growth in income and population across all ages will drive increases in consumer spending that will exceed the shopping totals of the millennial demographic by 2020, Morgan Stanley analysts said Monday.

Hispanics should grow their “share of consumer wallet,” otherwise known as retail spending, by 1.6 percentage points by 2020 outpacing millennial growth of 0.6 percentage points and growth for whites over the age of 65 of 0.4 percentage points, Morgan Stanley said in a research report.

Read full article

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Latin America Loves Facebook

eMarketer last estimated social media usage in Latin America in July 2015. Facebook is set to reach 39.0% of the total population of the region this year—equivalent to 69.5% of internet users and a dramatic 93.0% of social network users. 

Read full article

Friday, February 26, 2016

Are You In The Digital Driver’s Seat?

Don’t lose advertising dollars to digital. Take control with practical strategies you can pitch tomorrow. Many stations complain that they’re losing revenue to digital platforms, yet Hispanic broadcasters actually have an edge: Surveys show Hispanic consumers index among the highest in terms of digital use in almost every category.

How well do you understand your digital assets and how to combine them in seamless campaign strategies to engage both advertisers and consumers?

Read full article

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Dropbox Is 2% Black, 5% Hispanic, According To 2015 Diversity Report

Dropbox just released its diversity report for 2015 on the company’s blog, citing some progress around having more women in leadership positions, with 25 percent of the VPs at the company being women, but an overall decline in percentage of women. Last year, Dropbox was 33.9 percent women worldwide. This year, that percentage has dropped to 32 percent worldwide.

Read full article

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Predictions On The Future Of Digital Media

Several millions of premium headsets (not just Google Cardboards) will be sold by major consumer electronics companies that have invested billions of dollars to create market demand.  It will feel like the early days of the game console market.  While gamer experiences will dominate VR in 2016, live action VR will also show promise as the language of VR story-telling develops.

Read full article

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