For many families in DC and Maryland, summer has come to a close and students are back in school. As the first day of school for many LAYC youth approached, the days leading up to the first day of class offered time for reflection. Students had a chance to think about the previous school year, the challenges they faced, how they overcame them, and how to use those experiences to prepare for the new year. Although this transition period can be challenging, new classes, teachers, and classmates bring exciting opportunities. We spoke with a couple of LAYC youth about their upcoming school year, what they are looking forward to, and what they are nervous about. 

Kandice in front of LAYC mural
Kandice Johnson

Kandice Johnson is an 18-year-old starting her sophomore year of college who spoke to us about some of the things on her mind. Since she’s starting the year as a transfer student at the Fashion Institute of Technology in New York City, she’s looking forward to the new environment, but it may also pose a few challenges for her. Despite this, she is hoping to meet lots of new people like she did this past summer at LAYC, and hopes to collaborate with them in her new academic setting. 



Hewan Deyass

Hewan Deyass, a 16-year-old about to enter her junior year of high school at Washington Leadership Academy, also shared some of her thoughts. One of the things she’s looking forward to is taking Advanced Placement classes so that she can receive college credit. She is eager to join and participate in different clubs and after-school activities, even though she will be facing new challenges balancing extracurricular activities and a heavier workload that comes with being a junior. 


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