Fort Worth

Smithsonian Turns to Fort Worth Students for Advice

Two students in Fort Worth just got a big assignment.

Emily Morales, a senior at the Young Women's Leadership Academy in the Fort Worth Independent School District, and Derek Munoz, a junior at Trinity Valley School, are two of just 25 students in the country picked for the the Smithsonian Secretary's Youth Advisory Council.

Morales and Munoz have been asked to give advice to the prestigious Smithsonian.

The Smithsonian website says "The Smithsonian Secretary’s Youth Advisory Council ensures that the thoughts and ideas of the young people in our community help guide the important work we do at the Institution. By giving feedback directly to Smithsonian leadership on our programming and how we engage visitors, we can better involve this important group, and ensure we are doing all that we can to meet their needs."

Secretary David Skorton set up the Youth Advisory Council in 2016 beginning with youth in the Washington, D.C., area. Year two includes students from the Smithsonian Affiliate network. The Fort Worth Museum of Science and History is an affiliate.

"We get a glimpse of talented students such as Emily and Derek through various programs and events here at the Fort Worth Museum of Science and History and know what a valuable resource they represent," museum president Van A. Romans said in a news release. "I'm thrilled to know they will be able to share their insights with an institution like the Smithsonian and I have no doubt in the long run, we will all benefit."

The 2017 council held its first meeting Sept. 27. The quarterly meetings with Skorton will focus on topics such as technology in museums, how museums culd address societal conflicts and be catalysts for dialogue and how the Smithsonian might accomplish its goal of reaching 1 billion visitors.

"Taking the Smithsonian beyond the National Mall is critical to our mission," Smithsonian Affiliations interim director Myriam Springuel said. "The five Affiliate partners in the Council's second cohort are incredibly strong advocates for their own local youth programs."

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