On Feb. 4, Stockton University hosted its sixth Martin Luther King, Jr. high school panel discussion. Over 60 students attended from five Atlantic County high schools, including Atlantic City, Pleasantville, Egg Harbor Township, Oakcrest, Absegami, and Pleasantville. During this one-day event, professional and student panelists commented on the crucial role of youth activism in modern elections as they reflected on the Civil Rights Movement.
When asked what influence they would like to have on elections, students responded by emphasizing the importance of speaking out, doing their research, and listening to others. Despite many students not being able to vote yet in the recent 2020 Presidential Election, students recognized the impact that political advocacy and voting will have on their future. Sunrose Rousnee of Absegami High School stated, “we are using our voices to speak for ourselves and to get what we need. […] In the long run, it’s going to affect us the most.”
Panelist Ralph E. Hunter, Sr., founder of Newtonville’s African American Heritage Museum, was quoted telling students: “learn from the past, live in the present and look to the future.” Panelists encouraged students to continue these discussions and always advocate for change.
For more information regarding the event, read the full URM press release here.