On February 24th, teachers, Michelle Perez and Amanda Short, presented the workshop, Activism 101 at the 7th Annual Southwest HEP-CAMP Student Leadership Conference in Santa Fe, NM.
The College Assistance Migrant Program (CAMP) at the University of New Mexico is 100% federally funded through the U.S. Department of Education. The residential CAMP program was established to identify, recruit, admit, and enroll migrant and seasonal farm worker students and provide them with academic, social, and financial support to enable the completion of their first year of college (http://unmcamp.unm.edu/).
For their workshop the teachers shared their personal experiences of organizing and becoming activists in their communities. Then CAMP students participated in role playing activities to help them assess and determine the needs of their school and community, using the activity, Write Your Own Organizing Conversation from Labor Notes (http://www.labornotes.org/sites/default/files/24WriteYourOwnOrganizingConversation.pdf) to to guide students in practicing these conversations. Students raised many concerns related to racism, ICE raids, and the treatment of minority students. These concerns led to heated discussions and questions about how to activate their communities.
Through Michelle and Amanda’s discussions and activities, students left the workshop with an “activist toolkit” to agitate their respective communities and an understanding of how to start organizing.