MILLEDGEVILLE — Student representatives of the Mayor’s Commission on Youth Leadership presented City Council with updates to the program’s visionary project and its beneficial aspects.
“So far it has been a pleasure working with Mayor Richard Bentley and [Mayor’s Commission on Youth Leadership Special Projects Leader Isaac Cleveland] and learning about their view on leadership,” said Kentrez Worthen, a Georgia Military College Prep School senior, during Tuesday’s council meeting. “We have learned how to advocate issues that affect our peers, local government and the community. We also have learned how to make efficient and timely decisions and how to work together with others and organizing task.”
This year’s commission students are in grades nine through 12, including Chelyse Abrams, Jalessia Clark, Shanbriel Collins, Eula Hurst, Qadur Jones, Maya Mapp, Jazilyn Robinson, DeJanaye Scott, Marquantis Stewart, Joy Trawick, Keianna Waller and Jamarcus Jarrett.
“The goal of the Mayor’s Commission on Youth Leadership is to incorporate civic agency goals so that we develop civic knowledge of the county and community; to learn and apply the civic skills of organizing, communicating and working with others; and value our effectiveness to understand our own capacity to be change agents among our peers and throughout the community,” Worthen said.
Students decided to undertake the issue of teen violence and abuse for their visionary project, titled Airwaves Advocacy Against Teen Violence and Abuse, to advocate an important issue in the community. Seven teams of two are creating their own commercials to address one of seven subcategories, including bullying, cyber bullying, sexual abuse, relationship with parents and peer relationships.
“Students will make five to seven public service announcements on radio stations, at city council meetings, do a YouTube video and public service announcements in various high schools in the area and at their respective schools to advocate against teen violence and abuse between April and May,” Cleveland said. “We’re working with Walter Reynolds, who is with the local radio station and is one of the program mentors, as well as Georgia College & State University’s communications department to generate a video.”