According to JMG Specialist Susan Dubay, her Community High School students in Fort Kent embraced the role of youth philanthropists. After a thoughtful and thorough process to deepen their understanding of community organizations applying for funds, it was clear the students had quite a decision to make. Should the funds support bullying prevention, assist in leadership building, help support athletic programming, or support a high school-to-college collaborative program? The students listened, obtained information, discussed, and ultimately decided on the Green Bean Ski Club which supports the participation of 20 students at the state ski meet. The President of the Green Bean Ski Club later joined Community High School JMG students for celebratory pizza and networking.
This wonderful process goes on each year in JMG classrooms across the state. The JOY project has all the components of a student-led activity that is built for success; research, creativity, communication, applying knowledge, discussion, democracy in action, and finally, networking. The JOY project provides lessons that will last a lifetime – an increased awareness of the students’ local community, leadership, and community service. Just as importantly, the JOY project encourages empathy and a sense of value for the student themselves.