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AHS civic group busy during Women's History Month

1st Amendment 1st Vote was invited by the NYS Museum in Albany to present Virtual Video Visits to 11 historical sites along the Central New York Women's Rights Corridor. Auburn High School and Shaker High School students introduced the videos and Elisabeth Lentini was in charge of video, sound and lighting with the help of Olivia Kenney. Other students in attendance were Trinity McFadden, Hailey Maloney and AHS alumna Grace King, now a student at the University of Rochester.  
Christopher Sciria
AECSD Public Information Specialist

The Auburn High School chapter of a student group for girls that focuses on civic engagement is spending Women’s History Month involved in multiple activities.

1st Amendment 1st Vote is a non-partisan group that helps girls develop leadership skills. Seventeen Auburn High School students are members with history teacher Jeannette Oliver-Carr advising.

1st Amendment 1st Vote stresses its members know the “First and 19th Amendments to the US Constitution, become familiar with the Equal Rights Amendment, appreciate the historical significance of the region’s contributions to women’s history, know how and when to register to vote, articulate a vision for gender parity in local, state and federal offices, become aware of the fundamentals of campaigns, engage in discussions with former and current female politicians and to imagine themselves as leaders and candidates in adulthood.

An important part of what the group does is devising an action plan for community service. The action plan for the 2023-2024 school year is the Winter Warm-Up. Oliver-Carr said students recognized a need for winter clothing for Genesee Elementary School students because it is a walking-only school. They contacted school administrators to find out what students needed, went to the Auburn Board of Education to obtain permission and then put together a donation letter and sent it out to over 70 local businesses. 

“We want them to learn how to become changemakers,” Oliver-Carr said. “For me, it's learning the steps of figuring out what you could do for your community and making sure that the students are involved with their school community and the community around them.”

A highlight of the school year is a summit that will be held at the Auburn Hilton Garden Inn March 26-27 that will include more than 140 students from across the state. Auburn students will present their action plan at the summit. 

The Auburn students will also meet over 25 people who work in the legislative field. Conference attendees will also go to the Equal Rights Heritage Center. The funds for the students to attend the summit are coming from an Auburn Education Foundation grant.

“With 1st Amendment 1st Vote getting that grant money, we have 14 students going to the March summit representing Auburn,” Oliver-Carr said. “Part of the process is learning how to participate more in your community. It's also just helping your community and being civically responsible.”

For another activity, the seniors went to the New York State Museum in Albany on March 10 for the museum's family day and presented their virtual visits, a film series created by 1st Amendment 1st Vote where each video takes the viewer through the Central New York Women's Rights corridor. 

Oliver-Carr said Elisabeth Lentini was in charge of video, sound and lighting with the help of Olivia Kenny. Other students in attendance were Trinity McFadden, Hailey Maloney and AHS alumna Grace King, now a student at the University of Rochester. 

The virtual visits include 11 historic sites in the region, including Harriet Tubman’s Home, the National Women’s Hall of Fame and the NYS Equal Rights Heritage Center. The videos are a way to learn more about the impact this area and the people who lived here have had on women’s history.

1st Amendment 1st Vote members include:
Seniors and alumnae
Trinity McFadden (alumna)
Ava Pinckney (alumna)
Elisabeth Lentin (alumna) 
Deja Evans-Murphy (alumna)
Rylee Sheehan (alumna)
Anisa Wilkins (Class of 2024)
Finley Hogan (Class of 2024)

Addison Lange (Class of 2025)
Ashlyn Fenneck (Class of 2025)
Mary Alice Pineau (Class of 2025)
Olivia Kenny (Class of 2025)
Aisha Bailey (Class of 2025)
Jazmine Simmonds (Class of 2025)
Jayla Mathis (Class of 2025)

Samantha Carr (Class of 2026)
Kyleen Brady (Class of 2026)

Superintendent: Jeffrey Pirozzolo
Phone: 315.255.8800
Address: 78 Thornton Avenue | Auburn, NY 13021
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