Published: Jan. 23, 2019 By

KGNU DPS SVLOn the January 23 episode, AMPLIFY host Jennifer Ciplet speaks with three of CU Engage's colleagues from Denver Public Schools to discuss the exciting expansion of their action civics program, known as the Student Voice and Leadership Program, or SVL program. The SVL program nurtures the whole child and supports youth-and-adult partnerships to leverage community assets and create change. The SVL program, as we’ll hear on today’s show, has been life changing for many student leaders in the Denver Public School system. When students discover their core strengths and apply them in real-world experiences through the Student Voice and Leadership Program, school cultures are transformed and young people gain new skills in advocacy, organizing, and civic engagement.

Today's guests are Solicia Lopez, Director of Student Voice and Leadership (SVL) for the Denver Public School District; Ananas Mustafa, Coordinator of the Student Board of Education School Leadership Program Model for Denver Public Schools; and Esperanza Garcia, a high school senior at South High School in Denver and a student leader in the Young African American Latinx Leaders Program, aka the (YAALL) program.

CU Boulder and two other partner universities – UC Denver and Rowan University – have collaborated with leaders from Denver Public Schools to recently receive a 1.4 million dollar grant from the Hewlett Foundation and Jobs for the Future to advance, expand and study the Student Leadership Program in Denver. On today's show, guests discuss the plans to expand the SVL program in Denver, and what role university graduate students and faculty from CU Boulder, UC Denver and Rowan University will play in helping this action civics work move forward.


To learn more about the university-community collaboration to support the SVL program, read the article here. We’d also like to give a special shout out to our university principal investigators on this collaborative project, including Shelley Zion from Rowan University, Carlos Hipolito-Delgado from UC Denver, and Ben Kirshner who is the Facutly Director at CU Engage at CU Boulder.

AMPLIFY: Stories of University-Community Collaborations is a production of CU Engage, the Center for Community-Based Learning and Research at CU Boulder, in partnership with independent community radio KGNU. The show aims to amplify the voices of students and community partners who are working together to generate new knowledge and actions to address wicked public challenges.

You can listen to AMPLIFY live on KGNU every fourth Wednesday of the month at 9am. 

You can also access each show from this webpage, as well as listen to occasional AMPLIFY Bonus Content, where we continue the conversation beyond what we were able to fit into our time on the air.

Ways to listen to AMPLIFY:

  • tune into KGNU at 9am on the fourth Wednesday of every month at 9am
  • listen online anytime after the show airs via our CU Engage Soundcloud page
  • subscribe to AMPLIFY on iTunes or wherever you get your podcasts (search "Amplify CU Engage")