Lena Waithe Launches Hillman Grad Mentorship Lab

Lena Waithe
Tommaso Boddi/FilmMagic

Waithe’s production banner unveiled the program, which is designed to provide opportunities for marginalized storytellers.

Lena Waithe is launching a mentorship program to give marginalized storytellers a boost.

Waithe’s production banner, Hillman Grad Productions, has unveiled the Hillman Grad Mentorship Lab, a program designed to provide opportunities for marginalized storytellers to connect, grow, and accelerate their careers in television and film, according to today’s announcement. It is now accepting applications.

Waithe, the Emmy-winning writer and producer of such shows as Netflix's Master of None and Showtime's The Chi, and her company have already been active in assisting aspiring talent; the new initiative has a dedicated program that formalizes the aims.

According to the company, the tuition-free, 10 month annual program will grant 25 fellows the opportunity to enhance their creative skillset through personalized instruction from industry professionals. The Hillman Grad Mentorship Lab consists of three separate tracks: television writing, screen acting and executive development. The slate will include workshops, educational resources, professional development and networking opportunities.

“The hope is to populate the industry with people that otherwise wouldn’t have access to it,” said Waithe in a statement making the announcement. “Our focus will be on craft, how to navigate the industry and how to build community.”

Applications are due Jan. 10.  Finalists will be notified at the end of January or early February, with the lab beginning mid-February. Applications to The Hillman Grad Mentorship Lab can be submitted here.