By Morgan Bryce
Seeing a lack of active youth environmental organizations around her home state, Alabama School of Mathematics and Sciences senior May Jung collaborated with the Alabama Environmental Council last year to form the Alabama Environmental Youth Council. As it approaches it first anniversary this fall, Jung and her colleagues are seeking to expand the initiative and bring in high school students from across the state, including East Alabama.
Environmental education and awareness has long been a passion of Jung’s, who helped found the ASMS Greenpeace Club in years past before launching the council.
The council, which organizes and conducts several environmental service projects each year, consists of five different committees: educational outreach (to emphasize the importance of environmental education), environmental legislation (working with state leaders and representatives to prioritize green bills and effective environmental policies), nature conservation (focusing on protect the beautiful nature and wildlife that Alabama is home to), public awareness and sustainable waste management, all separate in function but unified in reaching one common goal.
“The AEYC hopes to spread environmental awareness to our communities through education and volunteerism and engage the youth of our state to participate in this global movement towards a sustainable future,” Jung said.
She added that the council has had successful communications with the Alabama Department of Education in helping promote the council to schools statewide. Various environmentally focused nonprofits have also provided encouragement and support.
“Many people are supportive of the fact that the Alabama high school teens are working hard to improve the environment of our community, state and Earth, a positive and important purpose!” Jung said.
There are three ways interested high school students can join the council:
-emails sent to email@example.com and
-Instagram through the council’s page, @aeycouncil.
While Instagram serves as their main platform, Jung said they rely heavily on word of mouth from members who serve as ambassadors both in their school and community.
“We are hoping that all the high school students who are passionate about the cause can find out about this platform and have the opportunity to take a stand,” Jung said. “So far, everyone who has heard about our message have been enthusiastic and incredibly willing to spread the word or help in any way they can, which is uplifting and very appreciated. We hope that through the community’s continuous help and our drive, the AEYC can help bring a great positive impact to the world around us!”