|Hayley Patz (pictured third row, far right in pink) a junior at |
Simon Youth Peabody Learning Academy at Northshore Mall,
Governor Patrick established the Council by an executive order in April 2008 to encourage young people to become civically engaged in their local communities and help tackle the state's biggest challenges, including education reform, youth violence and anti-bullying, by assuming leadership roles.
“The progress Youth Council members have made over the past several years is remarkable, and I am confident that this amazing group of young people will carry on that tradition and leave the Commonwealth stronger for the next generation,” said Governor Patrick.
Members were selected by an application review committee for their excellence in leadership and their outstanding potential to create change in their communities. Members range from ages 14-20.
"One of my students, Hayley Patz was interested in applying to be on this council," said Simon Youth Peabody Learning Academy at Northshore Mall Administrator Seith Bedard. "I agreed to become her sponsor and completed all of the paperwork. It was a rigorous process and the Governor received hundreds of applications. We found out last month that Hayley (a junior at the Academy) was selected to the council. We're all so proud of her."
The Youth Council will hold formal bi-monthly sessions and will advise the Governor as representatives of Massachusetts youth. In addition to their bi-monthly meetings, Youth Council members gather independently to share what they see in their communities and talk about how state government can partner with local communities to create solutions.
The first two classes of the Youth Council worked with the Administration to advocate for the passage of several important policy issues, including the Governor’s 2010 anti-bullying legislation.