2019 NextGen Citizenship Recap: Washington, DC

Tuesday, Jan 14, 2020

2019 NextGen Fellows by US Capitol

L-R: Chris Leahy '22, Madison Mellinger '23, Morgan Smith'21 (back), Hannah Reynolds '22 (front), Austin Mejia '21 (back), Grace Collins '21 (middle), Emma Pannullo '20 (front), Bruno Aravena Maguida '21

Throughout the course of the fall semester, a cohort of undergraduate students participated in the third annual Next Generation Citizenship Fellows Program, an initiative sponsored by ODUS and Whig Clio aimed at providing students with a space to reflect upon what it means to be civically engaged in our current living environment. Out of a competitive pool of applicants, eight students were ultimately selected to participate in a series of on campus workshops and a three day trip to the nation’s capital.

With a particular eye towards social impact, this year’s program engaged with questions concerning service and how students can meaningfully organize around their desires for a brighter future. The program kicked off in October with an on campus workshop that asked the students to unpack their thoughts and conceptions of social impact together. 

During fall break, the fellows then traveled to Washington D.C. to meet with various professionals working in the not-for-profit and public service sector. They also had the opportunity to mingle with a number of D.C. alum at a reception generously hosted by Joe Kochan '02. The program came to a conclusion with an on campus design thinking workshop facilitated by Chitra Parikh '21 that encouraged fellows to think about how they can lead socially impactful lives while on Princeton’s campus. 

In reflecting upon her experience with NextGen, Hanna Reynolds '23 noted that the Fellowship provided her with the opportunity to rethink her desired career.“I was exposed to a lot of different career paths that I might be able to pursue after Princeton that I hadn't considered too much. Since meeting Congresswoman Terri Sewell '86, I've begun to think more about working in the government,” she explained.

Phot of 2019 NextGen Fellows with Congresswoman Terri Sewell

From L-R: Emma Pannullo '20, Madison Mellinger '23, Austin Mejia '21, Congresswoman Terri Sewell '86, Grace Collins '21, Morgan Smith '21, Chris Leahy '22, Hannah Reynolds '22, Bruno Aravena Maguida '21

Emma Pannullo ’20 expressed that the experience allowed her to have robust conversations around civic engagement: “I enjoyed being able to openly discuss and dissect concepts such as citizenship, democracy, and justice with my peers, as well as analyze how they are being implemented by a variety of organizations." 

Through multiple workshops and sight visits, the Next Generation Citizenship Fellowship Program created an intentional space for students to reflect on their own ability to foster impact all while cultivating their own leadership and critical thinking skills.

2019 NextGen Fellows Group Photo