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2010 Top-Rated Nonprofit

Irwin and Florence Rosten Foundation

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Nonprofit Overview

Causes: Arts & Culture, Media & Communications

Mission: The MAPS Media Institute is a nationally recognized, local education agency and after-school arts academy in western Montana. We provide a rigorous, hands-on media arts experience for rural students, inspiring a passion for learning and equipping them with educational tools that they might otherwise find unattainable. MAPS incorporates science, technology, engineering, the arts and math (STEAM) to help young people achieve tangible public success and impressive personal growth. MAPS students learn self-confidence, leadership and empathy for others, creating a strong foundation for the success of all their future endeavors.

Results: 1) MAPS student artists win two "Awards of Excellenceship (equivolent of EMMY awards) from NATAS, NW. (2015). 2) MAPS founder, Peter Rosten honored as "Bitterroot Business Person of the Year" by the Bitterroot Chamber of Commerce (2015). 3) Peter Rosten named a MONTANA AMBASSADOR by the Governor of Montana. (2015). 4)MAPS honored as one of the top 50 after-school programs in the country by the President's Committee on the Arts and Humanities. NAYHP (2014).

Target demographics: Underserved, economically disadvantaged and rural students grades 8 - 12. 50-50% Male and female.

Direct beneficiaries per year: 500

Geographic areas served: Ravalli County, MT

Programs: Film, Design, Technology, Music and Entrepreneur

Community Stories

20 Stories from Volunteers, Donors & Supporters

Client Served

Rating: 5

As the former principal of Corvallis High School, the original host of MAPS, I have witnessed the positive impact the MAPS program can have on students from every level of the educational spectrum. I can list numerous facts and figures in regards to the reduction in dropouts, increase in GPA, increase in credits attained, and the overall engagement of MAPS students, but in the end, one major impact of MAPS resonates the most - creativity. Educators can often times get wrapped up in levels of proficiency, standards, learning targets and demonstration of mastery. We hold up A-level products from students who graduated the year before and say, "This is an exemplar." Although sound practice, the beauty of MAPS is that the there really is no traditional A-level. Therefore, students are asked/challenged to be creative and imagine limitless possibilities while learning technical skills. A simple, but rare concept. I have followed the progress of MAPS since I left Corvallis High School and can think of only a few examples of such high-impact, high-skill, and high-creativity programs. Thank you to the Irwin and Florence Rosten Foundation for your incredible impact on the students of the Bitterroot Valley.

Paul88

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This organization is so beneficial to many young people. I have seen it send students on a career path that could otherwise been out of their reach. I wish this had been available when I was young. Not only is it a great program for the individual but also benefits the community as a whole.

Logan T.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

My Name is Logan Triplett. I am a Cinematographer at the Helio Collective. I had the privilege of working with Montana Maps, and The Rosten Foundation a couple of years ago when i was asked to help them with a project they were working on. It was at this moment when i became familiar of what MAPS was. The students I worked with were very professional, and were wise beyond their years. When i asked many of them of what they thought of MAPS, most of them said the same thing: it inspired them. By the end of my experience, I was envious of the students for the amazing resource that they had. Not only is there no program like it within the state of Montana, but I venture to say that few programs do what MAPS does on a national level. I have had the privilege of seeing some of the MAPS kids grow over the last couple of year, while also being introduced to new ones: They continue to impress me. All in all, this is quite an amazing program that I would gladly tell anyone about.

Ryan27

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

As an digital media expert and college instructor, MAPS is nothing short of inspirational. The opportunity that this organization provides for young people to explore their creative potential through video and digital arts is phenomenal. It is important that MAPS continue to provide these important services for youth who might not otherwise have this type of opportunity.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I'm a Montana native living a long way from home. I run the investigative unit at CNBC in NYC but every year I get to head back to Bozeman for Hatchfest where I've worked with high school and college journalism and film students for the past 9 years. Two years ago I met Peter Rosten when he brought a group of his MAPS kids to Hatch. These kids were so dedicated, so mature, and so talented. - I walked away truly inspired. They showed such tremendous promise and it's clear that MAPS is guiding them to a great great place.

Steve67

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I own a product design company and was introduced to MAPS through the HATCH festival in Bozeman, Montana. I was influenced to pursue a career in design and engineering through a very similar program growing up in Fairbanks, Alaska. Seeing these youth embrace the latest in production techniques for web, sound, and film/video makes me so thankful for the Rostens and the MAPS media institute. You can be sure that not only are valuable skills being taught and learned, but--more importantly--the young people in the program realize they have talents and abilities that they never thought they possessed. Way to go MAPS!

Kelly75

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a huge fan of the MAPS program. Providing students with ways to connect and feel valued and important is the goal of many programs, and MAPS stands out in the field because of its uniquely creative approaches to teaching real-world media skills to youth. Montana is fortunate to have this program and its clear that the students involved truly love the program and appreciate all that they gain from MAPS.

Marc E.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I stumbled upon the MAPS crew by coincidence. In Bozeman to attend a conference at which I was speaking, I found their team set up in the living room of the guest house in which I was staying. The only thing that differentiated their process and dedication from seasoned professionals was their age. Later I again witnessed them hard at work, behind the scenes (they had been working on a brief documentary), and their enthusiasm was so apparent I drafted several of their member to help with a presentations of my own, which made my presentations that much more enjoyable for ME. I've nothing but good to say about the leadership I witnessed, as well as the dedication and spirit with which they embraced their efforts.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

The Bitterroot Valley MAPS program is an outstanding program that gives youth an opportunity to pursue careers in the technological world. This programs allows youth, who are interested in pursuing technological careers, access to instructors and employees from the movie/TV industry. These instructors introduce the students to programs that are generally not found in local high schools. The expertise from these instructors, who share their skills and talents, is phenomenal and many of them are straight from Hollywood. MAPS students are learning real world skills by creating docudramas and PSA's. Many of these students would have dropped out of high school because they could not find their niche in a traditional high school. Some future Hollywood movie makers may come directly from the MAPS program.

Jim's M.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Try this: When MAPS began in 2004, I honestly didn't think it would last. Our community is somewhat conservative and Peter Rosten came from that hated place, "California'. But here they are 10 years later and I've know a lot of the kids who went throuogh the program and came out of it as better people. You can't really ask for more from a school program, can you?

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Thanks to the Irwin & Florence Rosten Foundation and it's support of the MAPS Media Institute, the youth of Montana have an incredibly special and rare resource for creativity and knowledge not easily found in the wild west.

It's hard to imagine such a beneficial program with direct contact to the professional film world could be found in rural Montana. I have seen first hand the intimate understanding of film technique and craft the kids are exposed to, and then challenged to put to use, creating commercials for real world clients, music videos, and films.

I was first made aware of the program by a friend in a college film class, a MAPS graduate and star in her own right at film school. She put us in contact and soon, we were head first producing a statewide commercial, written, cast, and dreamt up by the kids, for the Governor's office! It was such a rewarding experience working with their quality content, and getting to teach them one on one about professional film set practices, working with green screen, and child actors...also a dog actor.

Several years later, the kids came to a local film festival, packed with Hollywood power hitters, and in a few days time and many late nights, crafted an amazing documentary short on the untamed power and importance of mentorship, of which I was humbled to partake. The beauty of this program is allowing the kids to get dirty, get their hands on the gear, and get creating. In this business, you must have firm, unbridled creativity, and the technical knowledge of the craft to bring your vision to life. Giving the kids the opportunity to learn and practice at a young age and fostering a relationship with top established film professionals to mentor them provides a level of skill and confidence I've never seen before. But with these bright minds, the mentor street certainly isn't a one-way.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Having worked in the entertainment industry for many years I can sincerely say the MAPS program has already had a positive impact on how Montanans tell their own stories. It is teaching much needed skills for those interested in filmmaking. It hope it is able to expand to other parts of Montana as well.

Mary Ellen E.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

MAPS is a program that helps students who live in rural Montana develop the 21st Skill Sets they need to make it in a Global World. Students learn technical editing skills, filming, music, photography, and the foundation of hard work. While working with these students I have been impressed with their knowledge of technology and its applications. These students also are polite and very respectfully of their peers and elders. They have learned Civic Engagment giving back to their communities and the State of Montana.

This program has made a big difference in so many students life giving them real life experience and helping them believe in themselves. We need more programs like this to help our youth succeed in LIFE.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Here's an organization that gives young people in rural Montana hands-on experience in the film industry. Not only are teens learning technical skills ranging from screen writing to set design, but they are acquiring the confidence and self-esteem, as well as the negotiation and problem-solving tools that will prepare them to deal with life's challenges. MAPS is a superb outfit.

Jeff Gersh, President, NarrativeLab Communications
Portland, Oregon

Tisha H.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

This is the best young peoples non-profit in the Bitterroot Valley ! Teaching youth great life and career skills. Thank you Pererfor all that you do, and thanks to the whole crew!

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

Empowering young people during a very impressionable period of their life is a challenge that the MAPS Media Institute does with aplomb and joy. The diversified content of media, art, and business, makes this program accessible to young people from all backgrounds, with all ambitions. Not only do high school students learn skills that translate into life outside of the classroom, they interact with industry professionals and experts, a powerful boost of confidence and motivation. The leaders of the institute are wholeheartedly dedicated to the students' development. Their passion resonates with the friends and donors of this program. For all the work the MAPS Media Institute does in creating a safe, nurturing, creative environment for personal and professional development in the lives of our young people, they deserve all good things.

Li L.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

What an amazing foundation MAPS is! It gives a great creative outlet for young, budding artists and mediamakers, and instills confidence in their ability and voices. Continued success, and looking forward to more quality work from MAPS!

Jill39

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I have worked alongside Peter Rosten and his MAPS staff with several teens involved in both of our programs (I work in high school youth ministry). This program is invaluable in promoting teens' talents and interest in the arts and, in turn, they have shared their talents in my ministry. Many of them go onto college majoring in films and TV. This is an invaluable program within our small town community-they fill a need that would not be met without them.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

MAPP is a great organization serving to provide professional expertise to young adults entering the work force. They succeed at matching mentors to these fledgling media creators in a high level way. The quality of work they produce is top notch and I love their enthusiasm.

Suzy F.

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

I am a Ravalli County Commissioner from Hamilton, MT and I deal with non profits on a day to day basis, many are working with our county and have our over site, we are a financial pass through for some and with others we offer our finance office for their accounting. As an active community leader I have a pretty clear picture of which non profits fit where in a 5 star rating and I can only think of two or three out of the hundred are so I am familiar with that would gain that rating. The Irwin and Florence Rosten Foundation promotes The MAPS program in our county and with no reservations deserves a 5 Star rating!

Our children are our most important asset as a nation and rural children are very blessed in so many ways in that our values hard work and strong morals and supportive communities make us a great place to grow up however opportunities like the MAPS program were kids are introduced to high quality communications training is just unbelievable and a miracle for our children in the opportunity it represents and the doors it opens to new ideas and directions for their future rarely found in rural America.

In researching this type of program I find it available in urban areas, the uniqueness of the MAPS program sponsored by the Irwin and Florence Rosten Foundation is that it is available to our high school age children in our county. That it is impeccable in all aspects and has been in our community for many years and never had one issue that would indicate poor management or purpose is something wonderful in the non profit world. The success and positive results are living works of art called high school graduates who move on the higher education far better prepared for their future endeavors as they have gained such confidence both in front of and behind the camera as well as all of the skills required to produce products that can be shown on media outlets in our market. The commercials produced by MAPS are as professional as any product put out by the major outlets and that is saying something.

5

Professional with expertise in this field

Rating: 5

MMI is a great organization offering students advanced techniques and training in media arts. This education is exceptionally advanced and provides students opportunities to work with and learn from experts in the field of media. It is also an education that provides students with enormous opportunity to "actually perform" in real life situations often generating commercial programs and products.