CARSON, Calif. — Student Terrie Kennon is studying political development and Africana studies at Cal State University Dominguez Hills.
What You Need To Know
- The Dymally Institute Fellows program exposes students of color to careers in politics and social justice
- The California State Assembly and Senate have 120 members, and 10 are Black
- The political exposure is for both college and high school students
- The fellowship program takes students to Sacramento, Washington, D.C. and, this year, Ghana
Kennon's focus is mass incarceration in the Black community.
“Not one single person who is male in my family has not been in prison,” she said. “That impacts the family dynamic horribly.”
Kennon wants to reform the system and work in public policy and politics after school. She has joined the Dymally Institute Fellows program, which exposes students of color to careers in politics and social justice.
Diversity is needed. The California State Assembly and Senate have 120 members and ten are Black.
Anthony Onwuegbuzia from the Institute says they want to introduce more young people to public policy.
“When it comes to energy and innovate ideas, we look to the youth and we celebrate the youth, and we want to put them in a position to utilize their talents to move society forward,” Onwuegbuzia said.
The fellowship program takes students to Sacramento, Washington, D.C. and, this year, Ghana.
The political exposure is for both college and high school students like Dante Reese.
“The earlier you do start thinking about it, the [more a]head of the game you are,” Reese said.
Kennon has run for office on campus. She serves as vice president of the Black Student Union. She isn’t sure if she’ll be a political candidate in the future, but she will work on policies that affect young people.
“I believe that justice and liberation will only come through the youth because it’s easier to teach people the right way instead of trying to unteach people the wrong way,” Kennon said.
The Dymally Institute is hosting a Jazz and Arts Music Festival Saturday on the campus of Cal State University Dominguez Hills. All proceeds benefit the fellowship program.