Every year, Birmingham City Councilor Sheila Tyson takes students to 7th Annual Black Women’s Roundtable (BWR) Summit in Washington, D.C. in her quest to enrich the lives of young women through civic education.
2018 is no different, as Tyson made her way to D.C. on Wednesday with sixteen young Birmingham, Ala. ladies representing the Student Government Association from Parker and Wenonah High Schools to participate in five days of symposiums at the BWR, an intergenerational civic engagement network of the National Coalition on Black Civic Participation. Throughout their trip the group will learn the importance of entrepreneurship, issues of economic security and prosperity, income inequality and how they can contribute to solutions through civic engagement.
Tyson and the group will join several members of Congress, and national community leaders from across the nation to voice their concerns on federal matters concerning their communities. Students will also meet with state representatives, including Alabama 7th District U.S. Rep. Terri Sewell, to discuss action steps to resolving issues in their communities and learn more on what policies and proposed funding is in place to address each of them. They will also be getting a private tour of the newest Smithsonian Museum, the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Tyson expressed the importance of building and organizing young women to learn the true power of their voices as forces of change ahead of the trip.
“I’m beyond thrilled to be a part of this movement and travel with our young ladies to Capitol Hill and stand strong on issues within our communities,” Tyson said. “It is a privilege to teach them the many fundamentals of civic engagement and help them realize the power they hold with making changes not only in our communities, but our nation as a whole.”
Parker High Principal Darrell Hudson said he’s excited that some of his school’s “shining stars’’ are making the trip, some of whom will be flying for the first time. “I think this is going to be a great opportunity. It will be a game changer’’ for them, Hudson said.
Parker students on the trip include: Tykenya Todd, Lankea Burgin, Nariah Mayo, Tamika Green, LaTammara Davis, Zariah Threatt, Janecio Andrews and Markita Phillips.
Wenonah students on the trip include: Courtlyn Scott, Aniya Kinnion, Jessica Moore and Shanyia Kimbrough.
Tyson said the trip was made possible thanks to donors outside of Alabama.