Soundtrack to School Violence by Cristel Martinez of Philly Youth Radio

December 14, 2011 in Youthcast by Emily

Why have so many schools become violent places? We'll leave that to the social scientists. But what it feels like to experience a culture of violence at school — for that we'll call in the experts like Cristel Martinez.

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Cristel moved to Philadelphia from the Dominican Republic with one goal in mind: to become a music producer. She didn't expect the daily routine of hateful words, unconcealed drug use, physical fighting and exhausted teachers that she found at high school in Philadelphia. But when Philly Youth Radio got a hold of her, Cristel spun her love of music and her disappointment at school into an incredibly creative story that takes you right into the hallways of her school.

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I recently spoke with Cristel, who's now in college studying music production and business. Stay tuned after her piece to hear our interview.

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School violence is big deal these days, and we want to see the young people who are affected by it driving the conversation. Generation PRX's Jones Franzel is heading up a youth radio project on bullying, with a grant from the Motorola Mobility Foundation. Generation PRX is sending equipment to five youth radio groups, and creating an hour-long special featuring their stories. You can share your stories and learn more about Generation PRX's bullying project at Generation PRX.org and on GenerationPRX's Facebook page.

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If you are in the Philadelphia region and are interested in making radio, check out Philly Youth Radio's paid youth apprenticeships. They're taking applications through December 22nd so hop to!