As a youth group, we see civic engagement in Los Angeles as the means by which we secure the American Muslim Identity and accomplish the mission of the MYG. In 2011 the MYG created the MYG Leadership Academy (MYG-LA) as an umbrella program for any civic engagement and leadership projects.
I. Course Modules
The goal of the MYG-LA courses is to derive the theological foundations of the American Muslim Identity from the Quran and traditions of the Prophet Muhammed so that youth can be properly equipped to be 21st century leaders. Course Modules also provide in-depth examinations of the leadership lessons from the Quran and the life of the Prophet Muhammad. Students will also approach contemporary topics relating to gender, pluralism, exegesis, interfaith relations, civic engagement, and more.
During the 2011-2012 MYG year, the following 6-week modules were offered:
- “Leadership Lessons from the Quran” with Jihad Turk, President of Bayan College
- “Freedom, Democracy, and Pluralism in the Quran” with Soha Yassine, ICSC Youth Coordinator
- “Civic Engagement: Leadership in Action” with Salam al-Marayati, MPAC President
- “Strengthening the American Muslim Identity” with Hassan Zeeni, ICSC Chairperson
In addition to the four six-week modules offered throughout the year, the MYG-LA offers special seminars. The goal of these seminars is to help young people develop the necessary employment, leadership, and decision making skills to become leaders within their spheres of influence.
In 2012, Elev8 and the USC Ansar Service Partnership offered seminars in:
- “I Am Change,” Part I: Opinion Shaping (in partnership with MPAC)
- “I Am Change,” Part II: Voting and Citizenship (in partnership with MPAC)
- How to Choose a College Major (in partnership with Ansar Service Partnership)
- Student Activism on College Campuses (in partnership with Ansar Service Partnership)
- Healthy Approaches to Stress Management
- Choosing the Right College, and Getting In (in partnership with Ansar Service Partnership)
- Resume Building, Parts I and II (in partnership with Ansar Service Partnership)
- Interview Skills and Strategies, Parts I and II (in partnership with Ansar Service Partnership)
- Creative Writing: How to articulate the American Muslim Identity through prose (in partnership with Elev8)
- Film Making: How to articulate the American Muslim Identity on screen (in partnership with Elev8)
III. Summer Programs
Let’s turn theory into practice! In the summer, the MYG-LA offers day camps and summits to offer hands-on leadership training. In the summer of 2012, MYG-LA had three special events:
- Los Angeles Civic Summit in partnership with the Muslim Public Affairs Council: an opportunity to access leaders in key institutions that influence public opinion and public policy.
- Identity, Engagement, and Expression in partnership with Elev8: One-week Summer Session with Quran classes (Dr. Maher Hathout/Wasi Momin), creative writing (Omar Offendum), film making (Nagwa Ibrahim), Civic Engagment (Saadia Khan, MPAC), Public Speaking (Soha Yassine), and more.
- IYLI: Interfaith Youth Leadership Initiative in partnership with New Vision Partners: a three day program for high school students who are interested in building skills in interfaith leadership, dialogue, conflict resolution and activism. Click here to learn more about IYLI.
IV. Interfaith Initiatives
Los Angeles is an inter-religious city, therefore, we have created the interfaith program to develop a cadre of interfaith youth leaders who are knowledgeable and capable advocates for interfaith work in civic engagement and conflict resolution among their peers and into the future.
MAJIC: Muslims and Jews Inspiring Change. Click here to learn more about MAJIC.
IYLI: Interfaith Youth Leadership Initiative: Click here to learn about IYLI.
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