Speak Out! Youth Leaders Make Their Voice Heard on College Access

SpeakOut CollageRAP’s Youth Leadership Council (YLC) made a big step in their education equity campaign by hosting a speak out at Lincoln Square Neighborhood Center in early June! Getting in the Door: A Community Conversation on College Access brought together NYC youth, parents, college counselors, and others to share testimony and personal experiences around issues in the college process.

“People tend to assume that kids don’t care about these issues or what’s happening around them,” said Maya Velasquez, a YLC member and rising senior from NYC iSchool. “But we’re here to say that we do care, we do have a voice, and we’re going to be loud and use it.”

Many recurring grievances came up during the speak out, including confusion around the SAT timeline, not having enough guidance or investment from counselors in school around the process, and not knowing where to find affordable prep.

The YLC also took this opportunity to share the report they pulled together on the survey they distributed this spring. The survey, which received responses from over 160 young people in NYC, saw that one of the biggest reasons students don’t do any preparation for college admissions exams is the exorbitant costs.

This is just the first step for the YLC in their push for #FreeSATprep for all NYC high school students, but they’re looking forward to continuing the push in fall! If you’re interested in learning more about the YLC and their campaign or want to get involved, visit their website: www.youthvoicenyc.org/