About me: Brittany

Hey everyone! I’m looking forward to thinking together about how to best support youth-created media. My name is Brittany and I am the Radio Station Manager at ZUMIX, where I’ve worked for about two and a half years with great young people.  At ZUMIX, we create produced audio stories about our neighborhood and a full program of youth-hosted radio shows that air on our station, 94.9 FM.  One of my favorite parts of my job has been building our radio studio inside of East Boston High School, where English Language Learners have been sharing their english writing and speaking on the airwaves.  I’m interested in how incorporating a creative element, like radio, into classroom curriculum can increase students’ interest in their learning and connect their work to their families and the community outside of school walls.  My students at Eastie have produced some important bilingual persuasive essays about immigration, mental health service provision, abortion, soccer and social media, as well as interviews with peers, interpretations of scientific results, and playlists of their lives’ soundtracks.  My life is better for hearing their perspectives, and I’m glad we have a tool to share them with the greater Boston community.  I would like to think more about distribution, so that their work is most impactful in reaching the right audience — policymakers, teachers, local organizers working to make a change, neighbors.  Outside of work, I do a lot of listening [to ZUMIX Radio] and other music, and do some running and piano playing.

Radio Arte is a big inspiration to me — a bilingual, latino-owned youth radio station in Chicago that aired community-based content from 1996 to 2011.  They are like ZUMIX Radio’s midwestern aunt, who we want to grow up like.  The good news is their twitter is still live, where I was able to find this fun cover: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6VPczDpinV8

 

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Interviews

I reached out to three different people. I reached out to the BAGLY organization, which is a youth led organization that is an LGBTQ+ advocating and safe space for people in the Boston area to get health services and support.

http://www.bagly.org/programs

I also reached out to Shayne who is a person in a peer led sex ed program I’m part of who also is the president of the GSA club at their school.

Another person is a girl named Izzy who is eighteen and a co-leader of the Get Real Teen Council which is a peer led sex ed program at Planned Parenthood League of Massachusetts.

https://www.plannedparenthood.org/planned-parenthood-massachusetts/local-training-education/peer-education

I also reached out to Nadya who is a freshman at Harvard and created Camions of Care. This organization’s goal is to provide menstrual hygiene products to people in need.

http://www.camionsofcare.org/

 

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Shewa Adelekun

Hi everyone!

My name is Shewa. I’m a master’s of public health student with an internet obsession which I’ve tried to validate through academia. My attempt at validation quickly turned into a deep dive into course work research and literature to better understand web 2.0, the internet of things and how we all (especially the youth) engage with technology. My hope is that through this understanding I can work with communities to design better interventions and tools with which to promote adolescent mental health and advocacy.

 

Last year I spent some time living in Nepal during the blockade. During this time some combination of the Indian government and Madeshi protesters  blocked the India-Nepali border preventing the trade of fuel. This led to a black market trade of fuel and as expected the cost of gas rose exponentially, to the point that petrol for cooking was at times a luxury. This is a video/choreography of a youth dance troupe (Cartoonz Crew) responding to the fuel crisis with hip hop. I love this video because while making a specific political statement the the youth also challenge (even in the face of economic adversity) many of the stereotypes or dominant narratives spread about Nepal and other Low Income Countries.  Through their creativity and amazing production we  also see that youth from “developing” countries ARE tenacious, creative, enterprising, silly, engaged, aware, current, smart and fashion forward. They can be B-boys, and yeah they might hit dat nae nae.

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About Me: Maxwell

Hello, my name is Maxwell Kreppein and I am currently enrolled at NuVu Studio in Cambridge, MA. I have two older brothers, Jared who is a freshmen at Denver University, and Ben who is a sophomore at Newton North High School. Jared is a one of my biggest inspirations and also one of my biggest supporters. He has helped me to develop my entrepreneurial skills, math skills, and also a lot of my social skills. He also is always at my side when I need help or advice. Ben and I are two years apart and you can probably guess how we interact… as brothers. We are really good friends most if the time but of course we have our moments. Ben has been a great older brother and someone who I can always look to for anything I need. My parents recently filed for a divorce which is pretty tough on me and my brothers, but I know they both have the best interest for me. I have always loved baseball, soccer, and the outdoors. One of my favorite things to do is to climb tree and feel the breeze on my back and watch the birds fly around. Something I have a strong passion about is animal rights. I always love seeing fish swim in a lake, or little chipmunks running around my yard. When I see a chipmunk caught in a trap or fish in a tank it really annoys me. People have to think to themselves, “Would I cage a dog for days and nights in one place? Would I set traps to kill bluejays or cardinals? Then why am I killing other innocent animals?” I have included a link to a website in which a couple kids save the day! http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2002/08/0812_020812_TVpuffin_2.html

-Maxwell

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About me: Tabia

 

Hello Everyone!
My name is Tabia Smith, and I am I sophomore at Wellesley College. I am pursing a Media Arts and Sciences and Spanish double major. I am from Charlotte, North Carolina, and having attended a very conservative private school, activism and social issues were always an interest of mine.
  Even from a young age, it was easy to see the administration’s desire to stop any progressive efforts at our school (like having a GSA, a more gender equal dress code, etc). And being from the south, students were also conservative and often racist or ignorant about social justice issues. This motivated me to learn more about social issues and join my YMCA’s Youth and Government program. Now at Wellesley, I try to keep myself updated on current events, and I am a writer and talent on Wellesley’s satirical news show.

I find bouts of activism to be especially inspiring when they are started by children. Child activists make me forget my hopelessness or cynicism about the effectiveness of activism in our country, especially when the power of conservative, oppressive officials seems too powerful to challenge.  They remind me that if people that young can do something, I most definitely can. I especially like the story of Little Miss Flint. An 8 year old from Flint, Michigan, Mari Copeny became the face of the Flint water crisis after writing a letter to President Obama requesting meeting to discuss the effects of the water crisis during her trip to D.C. Copeny’s work didn’t end with her meeting with Obama, since then, she has raised awareness of the water crisis on social media, organized toy drives, and even meet with Donald Trump.

http://www.latimes.com/nation/nationnow/la-na-read-little-miss-flint-letter-20160504-snap-htmlstory.html

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/dec/22/little-miss-flint-water-crisis-amariyanna-copeny

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About me: Kathy

Hey everyone! My name is Kathy Wu. I’m somewhat new in the world of design justice, and design activism. I’m excited and curious to learn from everyone here.

I graduated from RISD in 2015 with a background in Graphic Design/Literary Arts and I’m now working as a software designer. My skill specialty is visual design and interaction design; I’m also generally stoked about design futures. I have a little brother who goes to MIT and he is a big inspiration for me. We’re both passionate about education; together we make a very complementary STEAM pair.

These days I am looking to move my practice from one in a corporation setting to one in the community. For me, this means taking this studio class and maybe returning to school in the fall to learn more about media studies, research, ethnography. I’m especially passionate about education, pedagogy, and platforms for self-expression and learning. In my spare time, I’ve been volunteering at a kids’ science museum, which is fun.

One campaign that I’ve been following from my own school community is called Sad Asian Femmes. It was a class project by two graphic design seniors that is starting to have legs of its own! I admire their use of media to create a community and a platform that gives Asians in western spaces an artistic voice. https://www.instagram.com/sadasiangirls/

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About me – Jackie

Hi, nice to meet you all! My name is Jackie, a junior in computer science at MIT. I went into MIT hoping to explore some intersection of art, design, and technology. Three years of being here is more than enough to help me understand that this intersection is actually extremely broad. Recently I’ve honed my academic focus to the realm of designing and implementing user interfaces, and some of my personal interests lie in reflecting on how the sometimes subtle visual and social cultures that are embedded into digital systems reflect or shape the lived experiences of humans. I’m also interested in art of a variety of media, and particularly enjoy art that involves combining tech with some sort of unexpected emotional rawness.

While not necessarily a direct social movement per-se, I find online art-collectives/ “aesthetic” groups a really interesting phenomena. Here is an example of one called “Cybertwee”: https://creators.vice.com/en_us/article/cybertwee-collective-internet-feminist-cyberpunk
It basically seeks to be a contrast to the dominant idea of what cyberpunk is (gritty and nihilistic), by proposing a cuter alternative. In addition to groups like this tending to be inclusive communities, I think embedded into these visual ideas is the idea of making technology more inclusive for people who don’t fall into masculine identities, and expanding the definition of what it looks like to engage with tech.

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About me – Carolyn

Hi all,

I’m Carolyn McKenzie. I work full-time in the AV department at Harvard and am taking classes toward an eventual graduate degree part-time. My background/bachelor’s degree is in studio art — specifically non-narrative film and new media, which means for me, broadly, video games and interactive digital media. In school, I made some tiny games and films which tell stories about navigating disability and queerness in the public school system. I’m interested in new modes of storytelling, specifically through interactive means, within and outside the realm of the digital.

It’s been a few years since I’ve been in school. Since then, I’ve taught some workshops and held some panel discussions here and there for kids and adults on animation and the importance of play and the absurd as a tool for social change. I’m interested in doing more of that — and doing a lot more collaborative work. I appreciate when social justice work and art are allowed to be playful and find access to folks who may feel shut out of those worlds because they lack the language or the very specific experiences which supposedly provide a ticket to entry.

 

I want to point to Code Liberation, who provide free and low-cost classes for women, girls, non-binary and femme-identifying people — and have kids teaching each other kids to code. I think they’re an important organization because although there are perhaps a lot of efforts being put forth to teach folks to code, CL seems to emphasize the social practice of teaching and empowering one another — and not just the skillset itself.

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About me – Dan

Hey guys,

I’m quite excited to work with all of you in this collaborative class, get to know you better, and read some of your “about me”s! My name is Dan Chen and I’m a senior in Course 9 (Brain and Cognitive Science) with a minor in 6-3 (Computer Science). I was born and raised in the suburbs of Philadelphia to two Chinese immigrants, and had a somewhat typical first/second generation Chinese American upbringing. My academic interests lie in the intersection of cognitive science theories about learning and information storage/access in the brain, machine learning and artificial general intelligence approaches, and their implications to society as a whole. In particular, I have a strong desire to apply data science and social psychology approaches to the political realm, possibly as a means of fostering more honest and deep communication between people of differing political ideologies or as a means of helping increase transparency and accountability in government. Outside of the classroom, I spend my time reading about current events and global affairs, cooking or drink-mixing, eating and/or drinking, and talking to friends about current events and global affairs. I also dance from time to time and was part of the original effort of starting Solidarity MIT, which seeks to be a liaison between various groups working in intersecting activist spaces.

As for youth movements that are particularly inspiring to me, I would look at the entire Arab Spring as a largely youth-led movement, which, while having limited success on long-term outcomes, was a solid confirmation of the idea that youth movements can literally topple governments and halt societies. Al Jazeera gives a good breakdown on the way s in which many of the young men and women involved in Arab Spring thought about their respective movements and their eventual outcomes. I am also awed and feel deep admiration for the various young men and women who literally put their bodies and lives on the line in these revolutions, many of whom lost their lives, in pursuit of a greater goal, and aspire to such selfless bravery.

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