Wednesday, December 7, 2016

YDEV Event 2

Image result for new jersey 4So for my second YDEV event I went to another Woman and Gender Studies film. This one was called "Out In The Night" and was about four Black, Gay, Women from New Jersey whom one day decided to venture to New York for a Gay Pride festival and later that night were verbally and physically assaulted by a male on the street and were put in jail for defending themselves. The women in the video were projected as gang members, bloodthirsty lesbians, and were even compared to viscous animals by the media before the full story even came out in court. All of the women wound  up spending time in prison for "their crime"

This video to me was very hard to watch. It was very interesting to see how in a place so close to home and in this progressive era of humanistic rights that there are still people who are so hateful towards others because of sexual preference. Not only were they not excepted outside of their community because they were gay but they were also black, and also women. They are literally in three minority or less privileged classes here in the United States. These women were also defending themselves and there was video evidence to prove it and they all still got convicted of the charges. The man that attacked them was so an anti-gay supporter which clearly showed motivation on a hate crime and was never charged. The judge in the case was also very biased and the jury that convicted them was not a "jury of their peers". To me this how judicial system we had that was meant to defend people and convict those who truly committed crimes failed these women and now they have to live with the consequence of if they didn't defend themselves they were endangering their lives but by defending themselves they get put into prison. Also the way the media portrayed them was horrible. The media is willing to put whatever spin they choose depending on the audience that is listening and watching which really bugs me.
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As of this relating to youth work, is really showed how much injustice there still is in the world and to fight for every inch you can get. It also will help me to engage students in these topic of conversation and educate them so that way they don't hate but even if they don't agree are still tolerant and willing to engage with others by seeing them as people first.

What is Youth Work?

To me Youth Work is engagement, its fun, its being creative, and its learning everyday. People ask me all the time what youth development is and I give them the jargon of well its education, social work, and non profit studies. Usually their response is oh so what exactly do you want to do? I usually just tell them I want to be an athletic director and they engage into that conversation. What they don't understand from me saying that I want to be an Athletic Director is that I want to create student leaders through sports. I want to coach and help engage these students. I want to push kids so hard to the very edge of where they can go to see how far than can go and watch them realize how much they have grown and become independent people, learners, and leaders through their experiences. I want them to learn life lessons that they may not get in a classroom but through being a part of something that is bigger than you, me, and even them. I want them to go into the world knowing that they didn't just played a sport in high school but they learned how to be or be a part of something because of that sport no matter how successful or unsuccessful they were. To me, THAT is Youth Work.

PS. The article I read was This is Youth Work: Stories from Practice. I really enjoyed reading it because it gave me a sense of what real world and real life experiences are like for actual in field youth workers and what things I may encounter also and how to help be prepared for them and egage the topic.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016


For my first YDEV Event this semester I decided to go watch one of the Gender & Women's Studies films since I have never had the experience of viewing one. I was honestly expecting this movie to be shown in a different room in the library and very surprised that it was in the basement of the library down a weird corridor, in a back space that felt like Harry Potters cupboard under the stairs. Mind you when you first walk into the space, it is initially a space for the advisers for the department and you have to go even further into the depths of the Chamber of Secrets to find the tiny viewing room in the back corner.

Image result for harry potter's cupboardOnce I situated myself into the room I found it very awkward. There was only one other person in the room whom was there before me and being in such a small space we were only about 4 feet from each other and I dared not to engage myself in conversation with this other person since she seemed to be doing things on her laptop and preparing to take notes on the video. Then, 12:30 came and a person just simply came in and turned on the movie. No welcome, explanation of the movie, nada we just hopped right into it.

Image result for forever 21 boycottThe actual movie itself was not what I was expecting. When I initially looked to see what the movie was about, it described the movie as a story about three Latina immigrant workers and their story of immigration and their struggles working in garment sweatshops in Los Angeles. Well, it honestly was more about the lawsuit between Forever 21 and the garment workers. We really didn't get to explore what life was like for these people before the entered the United States and what their life is like now living in the United States. We got to hear about how they illegally entered the United States and willingly ripped themselves apart from their families for what seemed to be just as much as a struggle for them compared to living and working in the countries they were originally from. I think that their promise of a "better life" and the "American Dream" became their false sense of reality once they immigrated here and realized that the United States is not all what it seems to be and what people believe it is due to Manifest Destiny. Overall I don't think it was a bad video, but I do which that there was some room for discussion among peers and the facilitators of the showing about the document.
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As for this event relating to youth, I think that there were a few good messages from this movie. I think that this movie showed to keep fighting no matter how small your voice is, perseverance is key, and it also shows what the harsh reality of what immigration can be for some people and really allows people to appreciate what they have or don't have.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

"The capacity to recover quickly from difficulties; toughness."

Image result for resilienceI honestly never knew about The Center for Resilience. I found it really interesting to see that there is an organization out there that helps not just young people but all people manage stress and life obstacles while promoting adversity in both individuals and society. Check here if you want to see the APA road to resilience to get a good understanding of resiliency.

When doing this and exploring this organization I decided to watch the videos recommended and first tired to get an understand of what they do through their videos. Although I did have a hard time figuring out exactly what is was they do through the videos, I understood that they were some type of behavior management support system, they work with young people in all age groups, and not only teachers but other administrative staff fully supported the programs.

After I was done watching the videos I went and explored the website. Some of the key things I looked at were their mission to understand what their goals and vision are, their "About Us" page and also their donation page. I found it awesome that the kids themselves ran workshops themselves after the community asked for these type of services. I also really liked their donation page because it didnt really overload you with pleas for donations or list tons of reason why you should donate and I think thats really important to keep it simple.

Lastly I found it really interesting that they had separate pages for in their community and and workplace. I think its great that they started as just K-12 and quickly expanded to working with the community and private workplaces. I think it goes to show how good the work they do really is. I would be very interested in having a workshop with this organization.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

Who's Election is it Anyways?

Image result for whose line is it anyway electionWelcome to the modern election year in America. Its a year consisted of either the first female president or the first non congressman to ever be elected. Me personally, I absolutely hate politics. I firmly believe that just because we have the "right" or "privilege" to vote doesn't necessarily mean that our vote means anything. The people who run for offices and get elected are clearly in positions of power, have tons of money, and a personal agenda in which they use the platform to accomplish it. Our world is vastly larger, more complex, and filled with even more secrets than compared to when this country was first created. Basically what I am saying is sure we can vote, but our vote is more than likely more controlled than you think. In this election, I am not going to vote. I do not like either candidate and honestly wish that I could vote in Obama for a third term instead of the persons running for office this year, but then that would lead a person to potentially wish to never leave the office and always maintain that position of power. I feel very uninformed about the potential candidates for this election and feel that the topics and issues that go along with this election do not show a strong candidate.
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My three questions that I have about this election are:

Why are the candidates who have potentially have criminal or evasive circumstances be allowed to run for office?

How come the government has not released more information about the candidates?

How can I make sure that if I vote that my vote makes the maximum impact?

Heres some food for thought but of course it is what the Media put out there.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Context Clues

Hopefully I was not the only one but I really struggled with the whole "context mapping". I understand that context mapping is essentially a way so show the systems you are involved in, how you interact with them, how they expect you to interact with them but from looking at the examples posted it looks like just major roles that play into your life and the sub systems that come along with that role. As much as mine is not really a map I think it is A) because my skills doing it on a computer are awful, 2) I still struggle with identifying the major systems within my life, and 3) struggle still with finding my role and what I want my role to be vs what others want my role to be. I chose for mine to create a system of colors showing what is positive (green), a struggle (yellow), neutral (blue), and conflict (red) and chose the most influential aspects of my relationship with that larger system. I really hope we do this again in class and have more time to reflect on these.

As for the major identities they are achieved, foreclosed, moratorium, and diffuse.

A foreclosed identity is when someone chooses something without exploring other alternatives which is why I feel there is so much conflict between me and my family because I choose not to be an extension of them.

An achieved identity is someone who is just comfortable where there are with their identity. I feel that that is something that the systems you work within help you to achieve and are also accepting of your other identities.

A diffuse identity is is when you constantly change from one thing to another to suit your identity based upon your environment. Fashion and clothing are great examples of this or even sports.

Lastly, a moratorium identity is when someone is afraid to commit to their identity. I think this is something that is not easy to do because of the environments within the systems they preside in.

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Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Positive Youth Development

Displaying IMG_0697.JPGWhen doing the Ideology quiz, I first looked at it are thought that my results were definitely going to be Positive Youth Development just based on my life experiences and the work I already do in youth spaces such as coaching. What I never thought was going to happen was that I was going to put a one next to just about every Positive Youth Development statement and made me realize how much that type of work resonates within me. But what defines Positive Youth Development? It is a combination of positive experiences + positive relationships + positive environments = positive youth development. So based on the key questions in my "horoscope" which was "How can we build on the strengths and assets of youth towards helping them develop into healthy adults?" I noticed that it is something I do everyday. Everyday we allow students to choose the things that want to work on and positively encourage them through positive and constructive feedback to build confidence skills in the things they really love to do. We in the end want all of our students to be social and be leaders within their community through the things they like to do. I also did a little reflecting and thought about how well of a job I am doing and maybe what I need to work on out of the three aspects of Positive Youth Development and it is definitively positive experiences. over the summer students were forced to take certain classes each day and really did not have the option of doing what they wanted which was pretty discouraging to begin with. But, as a facilitator I needed to make sure they at least had the best time possible and sometimes with certain groups the day would just go bad because I did not know how to handle the environment in which they were bringing to the classroom such as lack of participation or even discrepancies between students that had happened prior to entering the room. If I noticed that the game plan for the day wasn't working and my backup plan was also not working where would I go from there? At times it became a difficult obstacle to overcome but over time I think i just need to be able to expand my toolbox of skills.