Communication Skills.

Critical Consciousness.

Our mission: Inspire and prepare Black and Brown youth to become socially conscious leaders, by teaching them how to communicate authentically and persuasively about social justice issues. 

We designed a unique, research-informed culturally affirming public speaking program that provides Black and Brown youth with a safe space to (1) reflect on and share their personal stories, (2) learn about the causes and consequences of oppression, and (3) practice talking about social justice in ways that are true to who they are and persuasive to their intended audiences.

Rather than targeting “high-achieving” students of color, we intentionally focus on those who feel disengaged in school. These students have incredible ideas on how to change the world, precisely because the status quo has failed them. They deserve a space to cultivate their voice and be heard.

Our program teaches public speaking with a critical lens. Students learn how some persuasion tactics (e.g., respectability politics and “poverty porn”) can be counter to a long-term justice agenda, even if they are “effective” at getting buy-in in the short-term. Ultimately, Vocal Justice goes beyond building students’ confidence and communication skills to building their critical consciousness.