Former 'dreamers' are giving back to program (expand/collapse)
At Lafayette's Centaurus High School, they participated in Public Achievement, an international youth initiative that allows young people to address issues through service-learning and civic education projects. Now students at the University of Colorado, both are serving as mentors for "I Have a Dream" elementary students in an afterschool Public Achievement program.
"I always wanted to see how it felt to be the coach instead of the student," said Castillo, a sophomore at CU who's working with students at Lafayette's Pioneer Elementary. "When I was at Centaurus, we felt like we didn't have a voice. But the coaches in Public Achievement always told us we did."
Martin Luther King Jr. Tribute (expand/collapse)
CU Students Join Local Youth to Pay Tribute to Martin Luther King, Jr. Nearly 600 community members of all ages and backgrounds celebrated the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during the City of Lafayette’s 8th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. March for Peace and Celebration on Monday, January 21, 2013. Planned by the Lafayette Youth Advisory Committee in partnership with the University of Colorado's Public Achievement program, the event commenced with a March for Peace on Lafayette's Public Road. Immediately following, community members reconvened at Escuela Bilingue Pioneer for an afternoon celebration, featuring a keynote address by critically-acclaimed rapper and poet Molina Speaks, performances by the Shekenah Glory Choir of the Second Baptist Church, Angevine Middle School Jazz Band, and Escuela Bilingue Pioneer's "Dance for Social Change" group, and original poetry by University of Colorado undergraduate Ace Eckstein. An inclusive community playback performance by Motus Theater followed, as did service projects at both Pioneer and Project YES.
Commenting on the event, University of Colorado junior and Public Achievement teaching assistant Sienna Dellepiane shared, "I think it is critical to honor Dr. King, who was one of the first people to really popularize grassroots movements and empower citizens to respond to social inequalities. It is appropriate that Public Achievement and groups, like the Lafayette Youth Advisory Committee, maintain this annual event, as they directly subscribe to King's vision."
See http://outreach.colorado.edu/highlights/view/id/69 and http://www.dailycamera.com/ci_22419536/boulder-county-celebrates-martin-luther-king-day-marches?IADID=Search-www.dailycamera.com-www.dailycamera.com for local media coverage.
CU Undergraduates Discuss Education Reform with Congressman Jared Polis (expand/collapse)
On Monday, December 10, United States Congressman Jared Polis (D-CO) met with University of Colorado Boulder students, who are currently enrolled in a practicum courses INVS/EDUC 2919: Renewing Democracy in Communities and Schools and INVS4999: Teaching Social Justice. In addition to reviewing legislative priorities for the 113th Congress, Congressman Polis identified ways in which CU Boulder undergraduates might join elected officials to reform K-12 education, better address salient public issues, and renew democracy. Approximately 50 students participated in the discussion.
Reflecting on the discussion, University of Colorado Boulder senior Bridget Doherty shared, "I was excited to have the opportunity to meet Congressman Polis and learn more about his career. I also think that it is important for students, serving as Public Achievement coaches, to have the opportunity to directly collaborate with public officials, which is the premise behind Public Achievement."
Congressman Polis has historically supported CU Boulder's Public Achievement program. In April 2010, he joined Public Achievement coaches and their high school counter-parts during the City of Lafayette's Cesar Chavez "Seeds of Justice" March and Rally. The event was coordinated by students as a means to both pay tribute to civil rights leader Cesar Chavez and raise awareness about the need for comprehensive immigration reform. Congressman Polis has also participated in the City of Lafayette's annual Martin Luther King, Jr. March for Peace and Celebration, which is coordinated by Public Achievements and members of the Lafayette Youth Advisory Committee. Staff members have also met with Public Achievement students on numerous occasions to discuss K-12 education funding, immigration, and other public issues.
University of Colorado Boulder Undergraduates to Mentor International Students (expand/collapse)
CU Boulder undergraduates will have an opportunity to mentor international students as part of a newly formed partnership with World Link, Inc. A non-profit organization, World Link provides civic engagement and leadership development programming to international students via a U.S. State Department-sponsored international student exchange program. In addition to collaborating with international secondary students, who are currently studying in Castle Rock, CU Boulder undergraduates will mentor a group of students from Belarus in July 2013. Visiting high school students will be invited to both acquire and apply core civic engagement theories that are rooted in the Public Achievement curriculum. Summer activities will take place both on campus and within the Boulder County community.
University of Colorado Boulder Opens Its Doors to Local High School Students (expand/collapse)
On Friday, October 19, the University of Colorado Boulder opened its doors to 60 Centaurus High School students, who toured the campus, observed undergraduate courses, dined at the Center for Community, participated in an intramural soccer game, and met with representatives from various student groups. Part of the University of Colorado's Public Achievement program, which both empowers K-12 students to find solutions to salient community issues and promotes student retention and access to post-secondary opportunities, the campus visit sought to introduce participating students to college life. CU undergraduates, who served as Public Achievement coaches, joined Centaurus students for the duration of their visit. The event culminated with a college panel, during which high school students had the opportunity to pose specific questions to CU Boulder undergraduates about the admissions process and the college experience.
Commenting on his experience, a Centaurus High School senior shared, "I had a great time, and really enjoyed sitting in on a college class. I also learned a lot from the panel about what to expect once I am in college as well as what I need to do to get there."