by Amber Bartley
Papers line the halls with various sayings about taking action. In a classroom around the corner, the words “equality” and “community” are the central focus of a group of determined students.
Sophomore Lucas Willman is one of two cofounders of the Floyd Central High School Democrats. He explained that he had previously considered starting a club, but only recently found connections within and outside of the school to help achieve the club’s creation.
“It began with Haley Palmer and I just ranting and talking about how we both wanted to do it before, but we didn’t think we had the resources to do so. But then we decided that if we did it together, it would be easier and we realized we could have the resource because of my relatives and the department in New Albany,” said Willman.
Although Social studies teacher Gage Brogan is the sponsor of the club, the students control what direction the club bases the activities around. Brogan said that along with his guidance, the members are motivated to direct the activities of the organization.
“They’re passionate about it. They’re organized and excited about it. I really have no idea what direction they’re going to take. I don’t know if it’s service projects or political engagement, or all of the above,” said Brogan.
According to Adam Dickey, Party Chair of the Floyd County Democratic Party, the club is a branch of the FCDP. The members of the FCDP will help out the club and create more community outreach among members.
“The Democrat Club at Floyd Central is an auxiliary arm of our local party as well as an extracurricular organization at Floyd Central. As such, the party will support the organization by assisting the club with outreach activities, membership recruitment, and related educational or community projects as agreed to and undertaken by the group. These activities may include voter registration drives, a guest speaker series, or volunteering for community activities, such as a food drive or to clean-up or improve public park facilities,” said Dickey.
Sophomore Kendyl Overbey said the main purpose of the club is to grasp the fundamentals of directing a club while acquiring decision making skills.
“It gives a chance for the students to develop leadership skills and learn the best way to go about being responsible,” said Overbey.
Although she is a foreign exchange student and will not be participating in the club next year, junior Yasmine Frizlen said she enjoys being able to voice her opinions and is wishful that the club follows up on her suggestions.
“I can still bring up ideas and I hope that some of it will get thought about, like the death penalty. I don’t want to change America because I love it but some things that I noticed were different and I thought might have been better at home,” said Frizlen.
Senior Bridget Cantrell said the club has introduced her to peers that have similar mindsets to hers. She added that the project topics can fuel crucial conversations.
“It’s hard to find other kids my age that just don’t regurgitate media to me. They actually have their own opinions and have some facts to back it up. I also think the projects are really good. I think they address things that a lot of students feel really passionately about and things that need to be more addressed in school,” said Cantrell.
Dickey explained the importance of having young citizens actively working to improve the world.
“We are very excited to welcome our county’s first high school auxiliary and believe it illustrates the important role youth can play in the political process, not just as volunteers, but as leaders working to improve their community. Together, we can build a better world that reflects the values of inclusiveness, fairness, educational enrichment and economic prosperity for all our citizen,” said Dickey.