Opinion

Insights from thought leaders working to improve the lives of America’s Youth

Victor Alexander Terry

Victor Alexander Terry

Vice President Public Affairs, & Chief Diversity Officer, State Farm
This is the first piece in a four-part series exploring how race and identity affect feelings of belonging at work.
Deepshika Muruganathan
Student, Columbia University
For many South Asian immigrant youth, at least those around my age, Hasan Minhaj’s Netflix stand-up comedy film Homecoming King felt like a breath of fresh air and a scream into the megaphone that many of us have longed for. In a brutally honest and raw form, Minhaj used storytelling and satire to highlight the emotions and experiences that many of us face in school, our homes, and communities. The parts of us that feel weird, lonely, and buried were amplified and transformed into a collective roar of “this is who we are, and it cannot be ignored.” 
Sophia Hala Chin
Youth Board Member, America’s Promise
Dr. Miguel Cardona has just been confirmed as President Biden’s Secretary of Education in the most diverse cabinet in United States history.
Like many, I spent much of Wednesday afternoon transfixed by the coverage of the violent siege of the U.S. Capitol.
Margarida Celestino

Margarida Celestino

Youth Author
To promote meaningful learning during COVID-19, teachers should not try to replicate in-person instruction online. In my experience, the way to promote meaningful learning is to adapt instruction in a way that recognizes the unique circumstances that we’re in.
Jackson Escamilla

Jackson Escamilla

Youth Author
To the students who may not have these adult leaders or mentors readily available to them, I encourage you to reach beyond your comfort zones and find a safe place to be able to make decisions.
Ava President

Ava President

Youth Author
Black students in America are facing an invisible threat that extends beyond the pandemic. This threat is widespread and prevalent, yet not as overt as the threats they face of police brutality and hate crimes.
Leah Franklin

Leah Franklin

Intern, America's Promise Alliance
At 21, I landed a fellowship that I thought would change my life. It was a small group of us.
TW
Youth Board Member, America's Promise Alliance
Having served on many advisory boards and holding various student government positions, I thought I was an expert in advocating on behalf of youth. But in reading the letters over the past five weeks, my eyes have been opened to the perspectives of youth from across the country. Youth from different age groups, backgrounds, and experiences that all share the desire to be a valued voice in decision-making. In this series, three powerful messages stand out to me.
Benjamin Brady

Benjamin Brady

Youth Author
While COVID-19 has barred me from entering and learning in a school-building-based environment, I still have the resources to learn from home. And just because I’m at home learning in front of a screen doesn’t mean that I can’t have as rich of an educational experience as when I was going to school in-person.
Alexa C.P.

Alexa C.P.

Youth Author
I am a sophomore in high school and a foster youth. My experience in foster care and having to move to multiple schools has prepared me for situations where I need to adapt to rapid changes in my environment. But even so, I was unprepared for the completely new way of learning that is expected of me during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Patton Byars

Patton Byars

Youth Author
Understanding the different motivations behind Black Lives Matter, initiatives to defund police, ending foreign wars and even developing more transparency in government should be important to every high school student today. It really is up to our generation to combat this toxic environment and encourage more students to engage in meaningful learning through civil discourse.