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YCC has first official meeting

Friday, December 23, 2011

Ivy Tech Community College sophomore Aaron Aselage (far left) met with Youth for the Community Committee members and Northview High School students Alexa Dispenett (far right), Matthew Aselage (second from left) and club sponsor Rochell Reberger at City Hall Tuesday to kick off the committee's first meeting. The group is a student-led community and civic service organization. [Order this photo]
Local students wanting to make a difference in the community met for their first official meeting recently at Brazil City Hall Chambers.

Students from Northview High School and North Clay Middle School have joined a group known as the Youth for the Community Committee (YCC).

The students said they want a club that functions like the legislative and executive branches in a democratic government and their main mission is to provide service to the community.

"Our mission statement says our goal is to get youth involved in the community and mentor the community," YCC founder Matthew Aselage, a Northview junior, told The Brazil Times.

Aselage added club members want the experience to be "very real."

He said he and his peers want to implement and use what they've learned, instead of just "having it as random knowledge."

Newly elected Brazil City Councilman At-Large Tyler Hutcheson attended the YCC meeting in a show of support.

"When I was in high school, I always wanted to get involved in local government and civic service, but there really wasn't an outlet to do that," Hutcheson said. "There was no formal process to get involved. I think what they are doing is so important, and I am excited to see it happening."

Aselage said the group plans to work with local governing bodies to accomplish more and benefit the community.

"All of our proposals will go to the city council and we will show them what we've done and what we still need to do," Aselage said. "They can approve those things, and eventually, when we annex the group to other parts of the county, we will also work with the county council."

Currently, YCC's main goals are to get leadership in place. Their first agenda items included taking bids from club members who would like to run for office to serve as YCC president, vice president, senators and house representatives.

Those wishing to campaign will have an opportunity to persuade their peers through speeches and debates, almost identical to that of a professional election.

The organization will also have a constitution based off of the United States Constitution, and club members will set up jurisdictions assigning leaders and club members to help specific parts of the community.

The group has been facing some obstacles involving meeting times and places.

According to certain school policies, clubs not directly tied into school curriculum cannot meet during school hours and in some cases, even on school grounds.

The club had to find an alternate meeting place, which has caused issues with students getting involved because of transportation and extracurricular activities.

YCC plans to meet twice a month at Brazil City Hall Council Chambers at 4:30 p.m.

The next meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Jan. 5, 2012, when the club plans to amend its constitution.

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