In the UIS School of Public Management and Policy, we emphasize the value of collaboration, building relationships, and investing in our communities. Currently, we see UIS students and alumni playing important roles in a collaborative community effort to host a Youth Evolvement Summit. The summit, which will be held from 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. at Springfield High School on Friday, July 1, is targeting youth and young adults ages 13-25.
The summit is designed to provide youth and young adults with knowledge and skills that will help them now and in the future and provide them an opportunity to connect with other young people in the community. The summit will cover topics such as education and career options, health and wellness, financial literacy, and leadership and community engagement. Youth and young adult summit attendees will receive a free breakfast and lunch.
Social Media Video Contest
To build excitement prior to the event, the Springfield Urban League, the lead organization for this event, is sponsoring a social media video contest. Youth and young adults ages 13-25 are encouraged to create a 30-60 second video featuring how the individual has evolved or helped their community evolve. Videos should include the hashtag #HOWiEVOLVE in the caption and tag SULsocialmedia on Instagram or #SpringfieldUL on Facebook and Twitter. The deadline is June 30, 2002. The prizes for the contest include an iPad, Air Pods, and a season pass to the Illinois State Fair and the winners must be present to receive a prize.
(If you are wondering, what “evolvement” means, it is a word the planners developed to reflect the combination of engagement and involvement.)
Job Fair for the Public – All Ages
The summit also will include a job fair from 2-4 p.m. on July 1 that is open to the public (all ages). Organizations, such as community nonprofits, higher education institutions, city government departments, and the military branches will have tables with information on jobs, higher education, and career opportunities.
The Youth Evolvement Summit Coordinator is R’Lee Jones, who is a Job Developer/Redeploy Juvenile Caseworker at the Springfield Urban League and a student in the UIS Master of Public Administration (MPA) program. She is joined in the planning by Co-Coordinator Tyshianna Bankhead, a Community Planner at the Faith Coalition of the Common Good and a graduate of the UIS MPA program; Tatiana Thomas, a UIS MPA Student and Graduate Public Service Intern; community leaders; and representatives from School District 186, the University of Illinois Springfield, Lincoln Land Community College, Memorial Health, Land of Lincoln Legal Aid, and the City of Springfield.
Registration for the Youth Evolvement Summit is free -- https://www.springfieldul.org/event/youth-evolvement-summit. Participants who register in advance have the chance of receiving in-the-door prizes. Walk-ins on the day of the event also will be allowed. If you have questions, please contact the Youth Evolvement Summit Coordinator R’Lee Jones at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Beverly S. Bunch is a Professor in the School of Public Management and Policy at the University of Illinois Springfield with a joint appointment in the Center for State Policy and Leadership. She conducts research on state and local government budgeting and financial management. She recently authored a Volcker Alliance Issue Paper titled The $195 Billion Challenge: Facing State Fiscal Cliffs After COVID-19 Aid Expires. Dr. Bunch is a co-associate editor of the Illinois Municipal Policy Journal and has co-authored a book with Dalitso S. Sulamoyo titled Community Action Leaders: Rooting out Poverty at the Local Level (Routledge 2017).