Imagine a space where you feel most welcome. Who’s in charge of that space? Is it you? For middle school and high school students, that isn’t always the case. In a new project called Picturing Leadership, 6th through 12th graders will discover that they have the capacity to make change in their community by identifying spaces they feel most welcome and included, things they enjoy and want to preserve, and things they want to be changed.

Picturing Leadership was sparked by Dr. Sam Dennis, a professor in the University of Wisconsin’s Department of Landscape Architecture, and is funded by the Neighborhoods Fund, a field of interest fund at Madison Community Foundation. Have you already spotted LCEC students cruising around the neighborhood to snap photos of the spaces where they spend time outside of school? Catch them touring places like Haen Family Park, West Towne Mall, the bike path, and Wexford Ridge Apartments.

The students have a lot to say, and they’ll share how they want their environment to change when they present to decision-makers they identify as important — like police, local business owners, parents, and the metro bus system.

Participating students will be available to answer questions about the project at the upcoming Harvest Celebration on Thursday, October 11, 6-8pm.  Stop by and witness the students in your area taking agency and making change!