My time inside the precinct…

Seven years ago, as a senior in high school, I joined a Youth Explorers Program at the NYPD 67th Precinct (@NYPD67Pct) as part of my senior community service exit project. Being a part of the program opened my eyes to a new perspective about crime and the youth. During my weekly meetings, I witnessed about 3 to 4 young men coming into the precinct in handcuffs on a daily basis. Most of the perpetrators fell into the same age bracket as me, with some ranging to no more than 3 years older. Yet, I couldn’t help but to dwell on the young male participants of the program who took a different route with their life. What made these young men and women choose a different direction with their life? How can they serve as an example?

I started to question the reason for these young men falling into the trap of the jail system. Part of me wanted to reach out and ask about their reasons for constantly getting in trouble with the law. I wanted to take the role of a counselor and sit down to have a talk with them and really listen to their deep feelings and thoughts. Would they blame their childhood, families, neighborhood, peer pressure, etc.? I wanted to know!

From that experience, I knew I wanted to work with youths in providing supportive and progressive programs as alternatives to being locked up.

First, I needed to acquire background knowledge about youth and the Criminal Justice System, therefore, I applied to John Jay College of Criminal Justice to study Criminal Justice.

to be continued…

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