The Philadelphia NAACP Youth Council, African American Museum of Philadelphia, Hosts Gen Z Forum

By Veronica Norris (Mrs. V)

Last week, the NAACP Youth Council of Philadelphia, in partnership with the African American Museum of Philadelphia (AAMP), hosted an open forum titled “Status Quo – Do All GEN Z-ers Think Alike?”

The panel discussed the current state of affairs, especially regarding social or political issues.

The Gen Z group is made up of adults between the ages of 18 and 21, also known as zoomers, born between 1997 and 2012.

They succeed the Millennials, born from 1981 to 1996 and precede Generation Alpha. Most members of Generation Z are the children of Generation X, born from 1965 to 1980 and the younger group of Baby Boomers born from 1955 to 1964.

Nina Ball, AAMP’s director of programming and education, spoke candidly about a range of interesting facts to the audience.

Philadelphia Sheriff Rochelle Bilal, who also serves as an advisor to the NAACP Philadelphia Branch Youth Council, also spoke briefly offering wise and informative insights for the room to embrace and noted how important it was to be a part. advice.

The Gen Z panel then took center stage to answer the question of the hour: “Do all Gen Z think the same way?” respond using signs saying “strongly agree”, “agree”, “strongly disagree” or “disagree”.

Conversations followed on topics such as mental health and wellbeing, parenting advice, regulations and policies.

NAACP Philadelphia Branch Youth Council President Jamir Coker did a terrific job moderating and interacting with people in the audience, especially during the Q&A session.

One of the questions that arose was bridging the status quo gap with Gen Z-ers. Each panelist shared their insights, starting with Zymir Brunson, Temple University; Jordan Koffi, Temple University; CiNya Vincent and Shania Carpenter, both of William Penn Charter. Each of the students approached the question differently. Interesting conversations, research, facts, knowledge, humor and respect were conveyed throughout the event.

Of course, this writer is a Baby Boomer (born in 1955) all the way, and my opinion of this generation is that Boomers have a lot to say, whether you want to hear it or not. However, I am sure that regardless of which category you fall into, good conversations between the generations mentioned can and should take place, especially given the climate we live in today, right now, and in the moment.

You can strongly agree or disagree or just agree or disagree that “conversations don’t matter at this point!” But I totally agree that they do – it totally depends on who IS LISTENING.

Philadelphia NAACP President Catherine Hicks said she hopes to collaborate on more partnerships at this level, as well as hosting another NAACP Image Awards watch party like the one held in March at the Museum. African American of Philadelphia (AAMP).

Hicks gave special thanks and recognition to AAMP President and CEO Ashley Jordan for her hard work and dedication to the museum and their collaboration with the NAACP.

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It’s also worth noting that the two powerful women demonstrate daily what “empowerment” looks like when you work together to culturally and educationally expose youth and communities.

Thanks to the following sponsors for making this event possible: Laborers Union Local 57, 8 X 10 Designs, The Earth Day Kids.com, On the Right Track (Dr. Dee), Brown’s Kitchen, Philadelphia PAAN, Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission, Ari Summers, the Strong Families Commission and the Philadelphia Sunday SUN.

Special thanks to the following members of the Youth Council: Meelah Smith, Jonathan Edmond, Anyia Norris, Diamond Wilson and family, and special thanks to Brother Solomon.