The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

The Voice of the Loy Norrix Community

Knight Life

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Second Wave Voices of Youth Program allows students to excel in journalism

Credit: Ender Ross
Previous program participant Alexandra Tuley works on a graphic for her advanced journalism class. Tuley was a member of Voices of Youth where she made a graphic for another participant’s story.

The necessities of life in this digital age mean that young people are more aware of social issues than ever, but it can be difficult to express frustration with social issues. Many Norrix students turn to Knight Life as a way to amplify their voices and spread awareness of things of great import to them. 

However there is another excellent program available, which aids young people so that they can work with real journalistic professionals in creating a story about issues in our community. The Voices of Youth program brings on a few students to create professional stories about a topic of their choice that is affecting people in the Kalamazoo area. The subject matter of the stories can range from the aid of local farms to self driving cars

“I’m writing about pollutants in the Kalamazoo area,” said junior Dimitri Agdanowski, who is part of the Voices of Youth Spring 2024 cohort. “It’s not in the news a lot, but it is a pretty significant issue.” 

The program started as a way to amplify young people’s voices during the COVID-19 pandemic but has since blossomed into a beautiful opportunity all on its own. 

Participants will have their stories published on their website, allowing them to reach a wide audience. Furthermore, participants are paid for their time, $20 per session and then $150 upon publishing their story!

However the real value of the Voices of Youth program is the professional journalists that help participants make their story, from the very beginning to the very end. 

“They [my mentor] have helped arrange interviews, which is difficult for a topic like this,” said Agdanowski. 

“It was really informational,” said senior Emily Porco. “I was able to reach out to my mentor at Voices of Youth, and they were a great help to me throughout the program.” 

“Me and my mentor sat down. She was a really good mentor,” said freshman Alexander Velo, who worked on a story about cell phone addiction. “I think we interviewed six or seven people, like Becky Parsons, just getting information.”

Voices of Youth meets four Saturdays in a row, where students can meet with their mentors and work on their stories. Velo’s story can be found here

If you are interested in the Voices of Youth program, you can apply in the fall this year on the Voices of Youth website.

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About the Contributor
Ender Ross
Ender Ross, Executive Web Editor
Hello! I am the executive web editor for Knight Life News, and I make stories about my community and my general vicinity. I also am struck with a terrible love for esports and videogames. Unfortunately, I think I am extremely funny, so go check out my articles on Muysenberg and Flat Earth.
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