Students Come Together to Explore Racial Stereotyping


DETROIT — Nearly 250 high school students from across southeast Michigan will come together Nov. 2 to discuss issues of racial stereotyping. The students, from 90 high schools are joining together under the endorsement of civil rights and advocacy organization New Detroit Inc., to improve race relations in their schools and neighborhoods.

The Youth Leadership Summit was established in 2006, and organized by The Youth Leadership Team — a group of 25 high school student leaders and five college student mentors. The event is co-sponsored and hosted by the University of Michigan-Dearborn, where students will meet on the school’s campus 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

“If we are going to come to grips with issues of race and racial stereotyping, it has to start with our young people because they are our future,” said New Detroit President and CEO Shirley Stancato.  “This is our sixth Youth Leadership Summit and each one has been a powerful example of the fact that our young people from all races and backgrounds want to work together to learn how to improve race relations in their schools and neighborhoods.”

The program is designed to engage students with interactive activities that will allow them to consider various racial stereotyping situations and how it impacts their daily interactions with others.

“The conference allows young people to network with a diverse group where they can feel safe to discuss tough issues like race,” said Stancato.  “It empowers them to take on leadership roles when they are back at their individual schools and neighborhoods.”