West Ranch Excessive Faculty rising senior Emily Chang has spent the previous few years pushing her limits and serving to others.
“I’m very privileged, and I never really had to force myself to look beyond my comfortable Santa Clarita home and think about other people’s living situations,” Chang stated.
In her sophomore 12 months of highschool, Chang began Stella and Luna, a jewellery firm.
“It really started off as just a small side business because I really loved sewing and making jewelry and being creative,” Chang stated.
After stumbling upon an outdated public service announcement that aired years in the past about home violence, it triggered one thing in Chang.
“It really sent me down this rabbit hole of research and encouraged me to grow my business,” Chang added.
She then determined to show Stella and Luna right into a nonprofit, with funds going to native home violence facilities.
West Ranch Excessive Faculty scholar Emily Chang shows jewellery she made. 072420 Dan Watson/The Sign“Just talking with the people at the shelters, it has really made the issue become real and more than just statistics and numbers — it’s real people,” Chang stated, “so that is what continues to motivate me all the time. … And it’s definitely been one of the biggest parts of my high school experience.”
Now, via a Pupil Leaders internship with Bank of America, Chang has discovered herself as soon as once more pushing her limits, as this system has transitioned completely digital, which Chang really appears like was a singular alternative.
“There are times when I kind of forget that it was meant to be in person and that I was supposed to be in Washington, D.C. for a week because there’s so much content to do,” she stated.
That content material contains a variety of nationally programmed webinars, the place Chang and her friends have had the chance to listen to from specialists on present points.
“So, I feel like being virtual kind of gave us the opportunity to meet even more people because there are no limits to the geography, and we can just sit down in front of our computers and hear people from across the country talk about really important topics,” she added.
A type of essential subjects was the incarceration system and faculty behind bars, which once more triggered Chang.
“It was once again another instance of me having to look outside of Santa Clarita,” Chang stated. “It kind of forced me to think more about my civic responsibility, like what do we as people owe each other? And so it’s really made me more empathic to the struggles that people around the nation are going through that I might not see in my own eyes, but are very much real.”
West Ranch Excessive Faculty scholar Emily Chang shows a Stella and Luna necklace she made. 072420 Dan Watson/The SignalAmong the webinars, the interns are additionally engaged on a venture for the Santa Clarita Valley Boys & Ladies Membership, making a device for members to submit testimonials to indicate the impression the membership has had on them.
“I think what the Boys & Girls Club stands for is really important and something that I believe in in how they’re kind of stepping in and helping these families and these children be on a better path for their life,” Chang stated. “So, even though we can’t go in every day and interact with the children, being able to help this branch of the Boys & Girls Club grow and prosper is really special.”
Chang’s participation in this system has as soon as once more sparked the need for her to do extra together with her nonprofit.
“Beyond just raising money and selling jewelry, I’m also trying to expand more locally,” she stated. “And more recently, I have been working with the Single Mothers Outreach in Santa Clarita, and together we’re working to create these jewelry making classes for the mothers and their children.”
Chang has additionally started to fundraise with a few of her gadgets, donating earnings to households affected by the present local weather.
“I think it’s really just encouraged me to recognize that there are so many ways that I can help, and I have this vehicle through which I can do that,” Chang added. “I have a platform and I have a business, so it’s encouraged me to kind of see where it is needed the most.”
Chang hopes to proceed to push her limits as she enters her senior 12 months of highschool.
West Ranch Excessive Faculty scholar Emily Chang shows ear rings she made. 072420 Dan Watson/The Sign