YCCS students proudly present the Highlights of Civic Engagement Initiatives they have been studying and exploring this current semester at the Next Generation Leaders Student Expo to be held at the Great Hall of the Congress Hotel on Thursday, June 1, from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. The Expo will showcase and document their experiences through social media as reporters, journalists, bloggers, videographers and podcasters as well as featuring a musical appearance by KatieGotBandz, a well-known Chicago area rapper, and an alumna of Youth Connection Leadership Academy. The event will be open to the greater YCCS community.
Thanks to the generosity of Sprint and its Sprint 1 Million Project, the students created their work using mobile devices with hotspot and wireless connectivity that enabled them to collect hours of digital interviews and video footage that will be shared during the Expo.
Motivated by the impact and repercussions of the 2016 Presidential Election, twenty Next Generation Leaders took to the road and traveled to Washington D.C. to attend the inauguration of President Trump and witness the counter activities occurring during and after the event, as well as the Women’s March the next day, interviewing dozens of participants involved in both these historic occurrences. Back home in Chicago, students continued their journalistic experience throughout the semester by chronicling their experiences as attendees of the musical Hamilton and the movie Hidden Figures. They also participated in and reported on four marches: the March for Science, the March for the Planet, the March for Immigration Rights and the March for Wage Equality that were held in Chicago.
The New Generation Leaders seamlessly incorporated digital reporting and social media into the civic engagement curriculum to develop global and historical perspectives on social justice issues that included voter suppression, racial and economic inequality and an inadequate national healthcare system. According to Kimberly Hopson, the YCCS Resource Coordinator “our school is thrilled to be a part of the Sprint Spring 1 Million Pilot Project. This program provides our students with the opportunity to learn anywhere, anytime. Possibilities are broadened for students who may not have had access before to the kind of technology which is essential in a 21st Century learning community.”