On Feb. 4, members of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland welcomed hundreds of middle school and high school students, from all around the state, to the capitol for Senator Nathaniel Exum’s Youth Day in Annapolis. Senator Exum, one of the early members of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, served the citizens of Prince George’s County in the General Assembly from 1975 to 2011, first as Delegate and then as Senator.

Andy Pierre, Executive Director of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland (LinkedIn Photo)

Andy Pierre, Executive Director of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland (LinkedIn Photo)

The day was filled with a battery of activities designed to engage the students by putting them in the driver’s seat for the day. Students learned about the legacy of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland, covering everything from influential leaders to major accomplishments, from Delegate Nathaniel Oaks and Senator Nathaniel McFadden.

Then the high-school students held an election to vote on who would fill the leadership positions in their mock general assembly, they then split up into committees where they vetted real bills with the help of members such as Senator Will Smith, Delegate Tawanna Gaines, Delegate Keith Haynes, Delegate Susie Proctor, and others.

Meanwhile, the middle school students went on a tour of the state grounds with Delegate Antonio Hayes and Delegate Charles Sydnor. Students visited the House offices, Senate offices, and the State House chambers.

After lunch, the Black Caucus brought subject matter experts from various industries to speak to the students about career opportunities in critical industries such as law enforcement and education and cutting edge industries such as cybersecurity and health engineering. The overall goal of Youth Day is for the Black Caucus to engage the next generation of leaders and inspire them to think big.

Upcoming events

HBCUs Night in Annapolis

On March 21 from 6 p.m. -8 p.m., the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland will be hosting the HBCUs Night in Annapolis, a night of unity in Annapolis in support of the HBCUs, where community leaders, HBCU Presidents and students will address the future of HBCUs with the members of the General Assembly and Executive Branch.

Black Caucus Meetings

The Black Caucus Legislative Review Committee meets Mondays from 4:00pm to 5:00pm in room 142 of the House Office Building.

The Black Caucus meets Thursday mornings from 8:30am to 9:30am in room 145 of the House Office Building.

Black Caucus meetings are open to the public.

{Andy Pierre is the Executive Director of the Legislative Black Caucus of Maryland.}