Booker T. Washington High School
Oklahoma Youth and Government
If I could have one superpower, it would be:
How long have you been thinking about making change or engaging other youth in making change?
I have been thinking about making change and trying to engage the people in my community since I began to have articulated thoughts. I have always felt very strongly about advocating for those who cannot. I have been a student leader since I began school. I was a line leader and then as time wore on, I became the Editor In Chief of my middle school yearbook, which allowed me to meet a ton of people and engage with my community. In high school, I have been able to be an officer of Student Council since Sophomore year had have been a dedicated member ever since. As far as advocacy goes, I was in Speech and Debate for these past two years and during that time I wrote two Original Oratories about subjects that I am passionate about. Most recently, I founded the Youth and Government chapter at my school and I look forward to nurturing the growth of the club and making sure that everyone can make their voices heard on issues that they are passionate about.
Have there been any particularly important moments that keep you motivated?
The excitement that the members of the Youth and Government members have when they talk about their bill or the mock trial makes me enjoy it all, to see people happy and to be passionate about what they are doing is what keeps me going.
Do you have any stories to share about that experience?
During the officer training in OKC, there was this kid who tagged along with all of these upper class men and after spending a full Saturday learning with us, he was so excited to get started. He would come up to me during the breaks and show me all the notes he had taken and the initiatives he had made to meet new people. He even had an idea for a bill that he would like to write.
What issues or problems matter to you?
I would love to teach people or make people understand that voting is important despite the existence of an electoral college. I am also a huge advocate for equality of all, but mainly in regards to women’s rights.
What motivates you to be involved in creating change in these areas?
To be frank, the most recent election has made me question the importance of voting just due to the fact that the people’s vote was not in parallel with the electoral college’s votes. But on on the other side, it taught me that we need to do more, we need vote more and be more knowledgeable of the politics and the leaders that we elect, that complacency is not the answer. So, in other words, the most recent election has made me extremely interested in changing voter turnout and political involvement.
What do your friends and your family think of your involvement?
My friends and family support me 100%. They agree with everything that I stand for and they encourage me to try and find ways to do more about it.
How do you feel that your work has made a difference?
I wouldn’t say that I have done much to work towards this goal just due to me being ignorant of things and limitations. So, I guess I feel dissatisfied with the work that I have done so far.