Meet Our Mentors

Creating Communities has a core group of highly-trained and inspirational mentors for its afterschool programs. Each week, students are greeted on a first name basis, given mentoring and the full attention of a compassionate and caring adult and expert instruction in the creative arts.

Meet our mentors:

Steve Poole – Lead Mentor, Tuesday Afternoon Learning Experience and Wednesday Afternoon Arts Club

Steve has his masters in Music History and his bachelors in Music Theory. He has been active in teaching and directing music for more than 30 years in areas of instrumental ensembles, youth and adult choirs, and at numerous music clinics in Texas, Florida, and Maryland. He has published over 20 dramatic sketches and has written and directed several Broadway-style musicals for local performances. Steve has served as a mentor with Creating Communities since 2015 as the lead mentor for the Tuesday After School Learning Experience, which focuses on STEM projects, and for the Wednesday Arts Class. He also serves as the program director for the Arts Mentorship Academy held at Maryland Hall each year.

Elizabeth Melvin – Lead Mentor, Arts Ambassadors

Elizabeth Melvin, from Annapolis, Maryland, is a multi-instrumentalist (piano, marimba and percussion) and singer. She has a B.A. in Folklore and Music from the University of North Carolina. While enrolled in the graduate level ethnomusicology program at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, she studied Cuban percussion under master drummer Lorenzo Peñabel. She later was invited by Senegalese musician Djimo Kouyate to play marimba in the West African group Mamaya. She has performed with the worldbeat groups Mama Jama, Jambulay and the Caribbean Art Jazz Ensemble. Ms. Melvin performs with the educational music show “Goombay: The Caribbean Experience” and has led numerous workshops for youth on world rhythms and music. She has taken intensive training with Dr. Will Schmid, the developer of the World Music Drumming curriculum, and currently teaches World Music Drumming in after-school programs and residencies.

Julie Snyder – Lead Mentor, Arts Ambassadors

Julie Snyder is the Special Assistant to the CEO at the Anne Arundel County Community Action Agency. In this capacity, she developed the Agency’s award-winning Green Summer Works program in 2010, which benefits low-income youth by offering comprehensive life skills, workforce preparation, and financial literacy training. Ms Snyder has directed this program for six years, and works directly with the programs participants as a leader and mentor. Ms. Snyder was awarded the MLK Jr. “We Share the Dream” award for her work with Green Summer Works in 2014. She also has been awarded the Hope-Squared Award by the Volunteer Center of Anne Arundel County for incorporating the Kids at Hope philosophy. Ms. Snyder has been working as a mentor for Creating Communities Arts Ambassadors program and Youth Arts Fellowship since 2015.

Read about Elizabeth Melvin and Julie Snyder in What’s Up Annapolis!