PLATINUM2024

The Unscripted Project

We teach life skills through improv education

Philadelphia, PA   |  www.unscriptedproject.org

Mission

Our mission is to equip students with the building blocks for personal and professional success through the power of an improv education

Ruling year info

2020

Principal Officer

Philip Chen

Co Principal Officer

Meera Menon

Main address

3720 Spruce St Ste 404

Philadelphia, PA 19104 USA

Show more contact info

EIN

85-0844633

NTEE code info

Arts Education/Schools (A25)

IRS filing requirement

This organization is required to file an IRS Form 990 or 990-EZ.

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Communication

Blog

Programs and results

What we aim to solve

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Nationwide, students are leaving school unprepared for the world beyond. In an evolving professional landscape, academic preparedness alone is insufficient for students to thrive post-graduation. Social skills and emotional intelligence are now no longer simply “nice to have,” but rather are crucial to success. While test scores, to some degree, can predict academic success, skills such as communication, relationship management, and resilience are more effective in preparing students for graduation and beyond. It is crucial that we invent and invest in a new educational paradigm that addresses both the academic and social-emotional development needs of today’s students. We at The Unscripted Project believe the performing arts – and improv training in particular – can be a powerful creative and educational tool to develop students into capable and well-rounded citizens.

Our programs

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

What are the organization's current programs, how do they measure success, and who do the programs serve?

Student Improv Workshops

Our free 10-week series of improv workshops in classrooms is our signature program. The series is taught by professional teaching artists and in collaboration with classroom teachers. Through the 9 weeks, we provide students in a given cohort with a robust introduction to improvisation and its associated skills. Our goal is for students to have developed and hone skills such as active listening, collaborating, speaking publicly with confidence, and resiliency by the end of the program. Our improv curriculum is differentiated by its focus on life skills — each week is centered around a certain key concept outside of improv (for example, point of view and character) and all of the games are then adapted to focus on that skill.

Population(s) Served
Children and youth

In addition to our student-facing programming, we are also empowering Philly educators to bring the power of improv to their students through our Act 48 accredited professional development (PD) programming.

Population(s) Served
Teachers
Adults

Where we work

Our results

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

How does this organization measure their results? It's a hard question but an important one.

Number of participants engaged in programs

This metric is no longer tracked.
Totals By Year
Population(s) Served

Adolescents

Related Program

Student Improv Workshops

Type of Metric

Output - describing our activities and reach

Direction of Success

Increasing

Context Notes

Students Served in our free, 10-week public school programs

Our Sustainable Development Goals

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn more about Sustainable Development Goals.

Goals & Strategy

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Learn about the organization's key goals, strategies, capabilities, and progress.

Charting impact

Four powerful questions that require reflection about what really matters - results.

Launched by the University of Pennsylvania and backed by Philadelphia educators, academics, and practitioners, The Unscripted Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit fostering social-emotional skills in the classroom through the medium of improv. Our goal is to equip students with crucial life skills such as collaborating effectively, speaking confidently, and growing from mistakes through an improv education.

It has been well documented that improv training can build fundamental soft skills including communication, collaboration, and resilience. In addition, a growing body of research has determined the benefits of applied improv in reducing adolescent anxiety, promoting deep learning, and developing leadership

While education in improv will not solve everything, we believe it equips students with a powerful toolkit to take with them into their lives. To this end, we are committed to partnering with Philadelphia public schools to support their students in both the ambition and achievement of their long-term goals.

The Unscripted Project offers programming that serves the needs of Philadelphia students and educators.

Our signature program is a free 9-week series of improv workshops in Philadelphia classrooms, taught by professional teaching artists and in collaboration with classroom teachers. Our innovative curriculum has been created with the counsel of our improv partners and is in alignment with PA state standards and both the Philadelphia School District’s Arts and Creativity Framework and “Get Ready, Leave Ready” standards, designed to best prepare students for college and career opportunities beyond high school.

We also empower educators to bring improv into their classrooms, whether in person or remotely, by offering professional development workshops online. Workshops will enroll a maximum of ten participants, as they are designed to be interactive, relevant, and fun.

In addition, we are focused on research and impact measurement. Working with our network of academic researchers, improv practitioners, and educators, The Unscripted Project is committed to being research-forward in the approach and design of our curriculum. In addition, we are dedicated to taking a rigorous and methodical approach to impact measurement and will always continue to advocate for the widespread application of arts education within schools.

How we listen

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

Seeking feedback from people served makes programs more responsive and effective. Here’s how this organization is listening.

done We shared information about our current feedback practices.
  • How is your organization using feedback from the people you serve?

    To identify and remedy poor client service experiences, To identify bright spots and enhance positive service experiences, To inform the development of new programs/projects, To understand people's needs and how we can help them achieve their goals

  • Which of the following feedback practices does your organization routinely carry out?

    We collect feedback from the people we serve at least annually, We take steps to get feedback from marginalized or under-represented people, We aim to collect feedback from as many people we serve as possible, We take steps to ensure people feel comfortable being honest with us, We look for patterns in feedback based on demographics (e.g., race, age, gender, etc.), We act on the feedback we receive

  • What challenges does the organization face when collecting feedback?

    It is difficult to get the people we serve to respond to requests for feedback, The people we serve tell us they find data collection burdensome, It is difficult to find the ongoing funding to support feedback collection, Staff find it hard to prioritize feedback collection and review due to lack of time

Financials

The Unscripted Project
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Operations

The people, governance practices, and partners that make the organization tick.

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Connect with nonprofit leaders

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lock

Connect with nonprofit leaders

Subscribe

Build relationships with key people who manage and lead nonprofit organizations with GuideStar Pro. Try a low commitment monthly plan today.

  • Analyze a variety of pre-calculated financial metrics
  • Access beautifully interactive analysis and comparison tools
  • Compare nonprofit financials to similar organizations

Want to see how you can enhance your nonprofit research and unlock more insights? Learn More about GuideStar Pro.

The Unscripted Project

Board of directors
as of 03/27/2024
SOURCE: Self-reported by organization
Board chair

Meera Menon

Philip Chen

Meera Menon

Richard Andrews

William Crowley

Kumud Goyal

Board leadership practices

SOURCE: Self-reported by organization

GuideStar worked with BoardSource, the national leader in nonprofit board leadership and governance, to create this section.

  • Board orientation and education
    Does the board conduct a formal orientation for new board members and require all board members to sign a written agreement regarding their roles, responsibilities, and expectations? Yes
  • CEO oversight
    Has the board conducted a formal, written assessment of the chief executive within the past year ? No
  • Ethics and transparency
    Have the board and senior staff reviewed the conflict-of-interest policy and completed and signed disclosure statements in the past year? Yes
  • Board composition
    Does the board ensure an inclusive board member recruitment process that results in diversity of thought and leadership? Yes
  • Board performance
    Has the board conducted a formal, written self-assessment of its performance within the past three years? No

Organizational demographics

SOURCE: Self-reported; last updated 5/14/2023

Who works and leads organizations that serve our diverse communities? Candid partnered with CHANGE Philanthropy on this demographic section.

Leadership

The organization's leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian/Asian American
Gender identity
Male, Not transgender
Disability status
Person without a disability

The organization's co-leader identifies as:

Race & ethnicity
Asian/Asian American
Gender identity
Female, Not transgender
Disability status
Person without a disability

Race & ethnicity

Gender identity

Transgender Identity

Sexual orientation

No data

Disability

No data

Equity strategies

Last updated: 05/14/2023

GuideStar partnered with Equity in the Center - an organization that works to shift mindsets, practices, and systems to increase racial equity - to create this section. Learn more

Data
  • We disaggregate data by demographics, including race, in every policy and program measured.
Policies and processes
  • We seek individuals from various race backgrounds for board and executive director/CEO positions within our organization.
  • We help senior leadership understand how to be inclusive leaders with learning approaches that emphasize reflection, iteration, and adaptability.
  • We engage everyone, from the board to staff levels of the organization, in race equity work and ensure that individuals understand their roles in creating culture such that one’s race identity has no influence on how they fare within the organization.