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Attracting Youth of Color to the Field of Planning
Juell Stewart shares news of efforts to attract more youth, especially females and people of color, to the field of planning.
"Youth engagement programs also address the structural barriers that prevent young people from engaging in formal outreach processes by translating the language of planning and the complexities of civic participation in a way that empowers them to take active leadership roles within their communities," explains Stewart. "The bottom line: The earlier youth are introduced to planning principles, the sooner they can begin building both their future careers and communities."
The Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning's Future Leaders in Planning (FLIP) program, serves exactly that purpose, under the leadership of Katanya Raby, who features heavily in the article.
FLIP works with high school students of diverse backgrounds from across CMAP's seven-county Chicagoland region, creating a way for kids to learn about what makes the world (and city) around them tick — and the language they can use to describe it. The curriculum uses urban planning as a vehicle to get students to contemplate the deeper social issues that undergird policy decisions and urban development. For Raby, it boils down to one guiding question: "How can we get students to have these conversations earlier and think strategically about how we can build our next generation of leaders?"
The article digs into more detail on the FLIP program, as exemplified by the summer 2019 cohort, and offers more advice on how to get young people of color interested in the field of planning. For instance, the article also five tips for attracting youth to planning, with more details provided in the source article:
- Trust and listen to younger residents
- Ditch the jargon
- Get out of the classroom!
- Work with universities
- Partner with school districts.