Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Partnering with YouthSpark

This semester my Women and Politics students are working on a project with YouthSpark an Atlanta based anti-trafficking organization. As a feminist researcher and academic I think it is important to give back to the community and so my work seeks to improve the status of women and promotes equality. This is why instead of having my students write a formal research paper as their final project this semester, I am having them partner with a community organization on a project designed to meet the needs of the organization. Since there were many anti-trafficking organizations in Atlanta I spoke with some contacts I had on the national level of the anti-trafficking movement to determine which organization would fit the needs of my students. YouthSpark came highly recommended and so I emailed them to see if they were interested having my students work with them. Thankfully they were willing and very excited at the prospect of working with college students so I went and met with their program coordinator to determine what their needs were and how my students could help. They identified three main needs so I broke the class up into two groups, One group will formulate ideas for the creation of meaningful volunteer opportunities at the organization and then the other group will work on a project that evaluates their Community Ambassador Program. In order to prepare the project proposals for YouthSpark, this week we had a guest speaker to our class, an intern from YouthSpark who is also a Clayton State Psychology MA student. She came to our class to talk with the students about YouthSpark and give them her perspective interning at the organization. My students asked tons of questions and I think it was useful for them to hear their colleague's experiences and impressions. 

My students asking questions during the presentation.



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