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AURORA – Shannon Cameron knows the impact the arts can have on building a child's confidence.
And Cameron, director of education and community engagement at the Paramount Theatre, hopes the new Paramount School of the Arts will do that and more.
"I have been an arts educator for 20 years," Cameron said during a media preview on Thursday of the new school. "I've seen it happen. And to know that the Paramount Theatre and the community and the Dunham Fund invested in this kind of project means so much to me personally. Because I know the kids who come here and take these classes will build that confidence and feel like they have a voice and feel like this is a safe place to express themselves."
The new $35 million school is an anchor tenant in the new John C. Dunham Aurora Arts Center, formerly Waubonsee Community College's downtown location. The majority of funding for the new school came via Paramount’s recently completed Act 2 Capital Campaign, which surpassed its $4.5 million goal thanks in part to a $2.5 million grant from the Dunham Fund.