JSA State: Midwest (Illinois)
About Meg: Meg found her second home at her high school’s JSA chapter. She became so fond of the warm dynamic that was created in the club, even though they were all completely online. The only regret she has is the fact that she did not join JSA last year during her freshman year, and missed out on the opportunity to go to in-person conventions.
Regardless, online conventions have been just as wonderful! She finds herself looking forward every week to so many fun and interesting debates, thought talks, and activities put together by her chapter. She realized JSA was much more than just a political club, and she first hand saw the impact it made on her and those around her.
Meg was beyond honored to be a midyear Chapter Internal Affairs agent on Midwest Cabinet this year, which only furthered her love for the club. All the late-night department calls, the wonderful people she met across the Midwest and the memories she has made at conventions is something she will cherish forever.
She admires all the work students put in to make sure JSA runs successfully, and she is glad she can contribute to the effort. Outside of JSA, Meg does DECA, Mock Trial, and plays lacrosse. She loves boba and you can probably find her at a boba cafe on any given day. All in all, Meg is extremely grateful for all the friendships and opportunities she has gained through JSA, and she cannot wait to make more.
When was the pivotal moment where you decided to join JSA?
The first few days into school, my friend asked me if I wanted to do JSA with her. I thought it was the perfect opportunity because over the summer I became extremely involved with activism and current events, and constantly tried to be an informed member of our community. I knew from the start JSA can take this habit of mine and manifest it in a productive manner! JSA is such a huge club across many high schools in the country, and I did not want to miss the chance to be able to converse with other individuals who felt as strongly about politics and world issues as me.
What is an issue you are passionate about, and how has JSA helped you be active in that area?
I have always been passionate about gun control, and how it can reduce the number of school shootings every single year in the United States. This topic has weighed heavy on my mind since the Stoneman Douglass High School Shooting in 2018. At a chapter level, my JSA community has allowed me to navigate through this topic through mature discussions, which helps me enlighten other members and hear other perspectives. My chapter was even able to explore how the legal system and even society itself views such shooters, and how even race can be a factor. JSA has allowed me to become more educated on such topics and look at the bigger picture of school shootings, a trait I can utilize efficiently with the activism group March for Our Lives. JSA has a further impact than just me as an individual - it also carries on to other activist-oriented organizations.
What would you say is an opportunity that JSA provides for you as a High School student?
What drives JSA to be such a wonderful organization is the intellect of all the students who are members of it. Everyone is striving to be educated and broaden their scope on the reality of society. Participating in debates, thought talks, activism activities at state-level conventions allows new insight and knowledge to flow from the diverse range of students across the country.
This knowledge and education source is an honorable opportunity JSA provides to me as a high school student. JSA has taught me about learning and being passionate about something and ultimately acting on it, and this is a trait I will carry on with me after high school.
How are you a representative of JSA in your local community and beyond?
In my local community, I am always advocating for JSA! I try my best to get my friends to become involved, and I have been successful occasionally. JSA has made me a better person, and I would love to give everyone a chance to be on this journey. This passion I have for the JSA community to grow is a contributing reason I am applying to be an expansion agent.
I am very optimistic that the position will help me create a greater impact on my local community and beyond. As for now, I am constantly reflecting good feedback about JSA to the members of my community and using what JSA has taught me in situations beyond.
Who is a person that inspires you to go beyond the barriers you have?
I know this a pretty generic answer, but for me, it is my mom. She is such a hard-working woman with a reputable job. She is constantly looking to improve herself for others around her. I hope one day I can be as selfless as she is, and I can push myself always to be the best version of myself. She manages to have a job, taking care of our family, household work, and a million other responsibilities. She is the standard I hold myself to, and she is my forever inspiration always to go above and beyond because I can be capable of anything if I put my mind to it.