My name is Chloe Mattes, I am the Youth Outreach Chair for the Wisconsin PTA State board. I am a freshman at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside. When I first started this position, I really had no clue how much time and dedication that the men and women on the state board spent advocating for us; the students.
I went into this position with no clue on what to do, and my main concern was how I spread the mission of the PTA, making sure the students’ voices are heard. I then decided to start The Wisconsin PTA Youth network with videos ranging from, Why you should join the PTA; to College and career readiness.
Sometimes as students, we have the perception that people won’t listen and don’t care what we have to say, but that is not always true. Since students are the ones that are affected by many decisions, we need to start advocating for ourselves. By showing a vested interest in our education, we are doing everything we can to make responsible decisions for our future.
We are the next generation of future leaders, and we need to make sure we are involved in the decision process no matter our age, race, or gender. All of our voices matter. None of this would have been possible without my mom telling me, “Hey, we have a position open for a youth representative, and I think you’d be really good at it.”
Sometimes all it takes is a push and some really amazing people to find something you are very passionate about.