Parents of recent grad donate $1 million

The American Film Institute is launching its first-ever endowed fellowship thanks to a $1 million gift from the parents of a recent AFI graduate.

It’s unveiling the Mosie Hackett Endowed Fellowship on Thursday night at the Conservatory Thesis Showcase. The gift is designed to ensure in perpetuity that one AFI Conservatory Fellow every year has the opportunity to study a filmmaking discipline of his or her choice without the pressures of tuition.

Mosie Hackett received her Master of Fine Arts degree in screenwriting from the AFI Conservatory in 2010, prompting parents James and Maureen Hackett to create the fellowship to afford others at AFI a similar opportunity for personal and professional growth.

Between 60% and 70% of AFI Fellows rely on financial aid (student loans, scholarships, aid) to complete their education, similar to the national average of 74%.

AFI provides training in cinematography, directing, editing, producing, production design and screenwriting. Since the institution’s formation in 1969, more than 4,200 artists have graduated from the AFI Conservatory, including Darren Aronofsky, Keith Cunningham, Anne Garefino, Susannah Grant, Matthew Libatique, David Lynch, Terrence Malick, Wally Pfister and Ed Zwick.

James T. Hackett was most recently chairman-CEO of Andarko Petroleum, chairman of America’s Natural Gas Alliance and chairman of the board of the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas. Maureen O’Gara Hackett has an extensive background in philanthropy, including as past chair of the Greater Houston Community Foundation, director of the bdoard of the Menninger Clinic and a trustee of Mental Health America Houston.

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