Negative stereotypes surround the youth of low-resource neighborhoods. Recently, these misconceptions have manifested into the deaths of youth like Trayvon Martin, Mike Brown, and Jessica Hernandez. The demeanor of these young adults resulted in ill judgment by authority figures and the ending of their lives. How can graphic design help alleviate some of the identity barriers that obstruct the path of underserved youth? This project will examine how the negative cognizance associated with underserved youth reflects their formation of ‘self,’ and what avenues can be taken to empower them.
With this project, I intend to engage 3-5 underserved youth in a dialogue about their relationship to society. Through various visual exercises, I want to learn about how their concept of ‘self’ has been molded by their environment. After weeks of workshops and focus groups, I want to re-evaluate the teens and assess how their change of environment and acquired knowledge has effected their identity. For example, I believe that through an exploration of Chicano and Africana history, the self-regard and perspective of underserved youth can be heightened and enriched.