Going into DITR (Diamond In The Raw) I wasn’t quite sure, what to expect from it , therefore I was a little wary at first.

Over time I began to look forward to our weekly meetings.

Being a part of this program gave me an avenue to apply some of the life skills I was taught growing up; such as setting goals, living out integrity and being a leader vs. a follower.

It also educated me and opened my eyes to the plethora of lucrative and exciting work options that take place behind the scenes such as, script supervisor, sound mixer, casting director, production coordinator, make-up artist, hair stylist production assistant, stunt coordinator to name a very few.

I had my heart set on only being an actress when I entered the program, now I’m considering being a producer as well

In a portion of the program there were what we call mentor moments. The program provided an opportunity for me to meet first hand people who are actively working in the industry. Through these encounters I was able to network and create personal relationships with some of the speakers. From these personal connections many job opportunity and internships have been extended to me.

One of my most memorable moments during the program was getting to be co-producer of a short film that two young ladies and I created the story line for.

All of us in DITR got a chance to be a part of creating the short film.
Every girl was paired up with a professional who worked in her particular area of interest to give them an opportunity to shadow them during the making of our film. As co-producer my job was to help the producer keep track of how much was being spent and on what to ensure the film didn’t go way over budget.

I would like to acknowledge the Founder and CEO of DITR, LaFaye Baker , and thank her for all of the effort she puts into the behind the scenes work to make the Diamonds In The Raw program a success. The sacrifices that she makes so that we can enjoy the benefits of the program are greatly appreciated.

Shammah Tatum 2014