Voice Mind Choice
I was a member of a 5-person team that received $100 funding to develop a social venture during a semester-long course. We identified market needs, developed and tested product and service ideas, established a clear value proposition, created a stream of revenues, and pitched our ideas and findings. We live in a time where youth activism is at its peak, especially on American University’s campus, so we wanted our business to capture the essence of student determination, passion for equality and hope for our future. We came up with the idea of selling black shirts with powerful phrases printed in stylistic-white letters; the simplicity behind the black and white disposition is to give emphasis on the words. We donated 10 percent of our earnings from each t-shirt to a charity fighting against hunger.
Changing Lives & Creating Possibilities: The Need for After School Programs
Disproportionate funding in public schools has been an ongoing issue for several years now. This deficit of funding has resulted in the lack of resources being appropriated to these schools causing a hindrance to student performance, higher teacher turnover rates, and unfortunately an impact on the health of students. My 5 team members and I decided to conduct a social action project focusing on whether or not people of color have been oppressed by structural and institutional racism. We studied its causes, mainly academic achievement in schools and the role low- funded public schools may play, and advocated for funding reform for public schools. In the process we teamed up with Life Pieces to Masterpieces which is an enrichment program serving young African American boys and men from underserved neighborhoods in Washington, D.C. Life Pieces to Masterpieces works to provide a community for the boys, transform their lives using artistic expression and fill the achievement gap by improving their academic success.