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Youth Radio

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Youth Radio was founded in 1990 on the deeply held belief that underserved youth, ages 14-24 years old, have the creativity, technical skills and entrepreneurial spirit to become leaders in the multi-media industry and the community and to serve as mentors to other youth.

The heart of its pioneering efforts is to train young people from under-resourced public schools, community-based organizations, group homes and juvenile detention centers in broadcast journalism, media production and cutting-edge technology. Youth Radio offers professional development and technical skills training absolutely free of charge with the aim of preparing young people for pathways to meaningful careers. Youth Radio graduates leave with the soft and hard skills necessary to land jobs with employers from KCBS and KQED to the Port of Oakland and Google.

Each year Youth Radio introduces diverse groups of students to a broad spectrum of media-related careers and state-of-the-art technology. Its program goals are to strengthen basic life-skills, motivate them to graduate from high school and attend a two or four year university and prepare them for multi-media and other careers in the 21st Century Marketplace.

Youth Radio currently trains 1,300 youth each year to develop core competencies in audio, video, web and print and to produce the highest quality original media for the widest range of mainstream outlets. Its reporters are heard worldwide through radio, video and the Internet and through print media.

Seventeen years ago San Francisco’s KQED broadcast Youth Radio’s first two minute youth commentary. Today, more than 300 Youth Radio reports and commentaries are broadcast each year on National Public Radio programs such as All Things Considered and Morning Edition, on-line outlets like CNN.com and iTunes and on public radio stations across the country. An estimated 27 million people hear and read the often overlooked perspectives of young people through Youth Radio’s work each year.

Youth Radio has become nationally and internationally known as a cutting edge youth development and media organization, weaving the fast end of the ‘digital curve’ with best practices and innovation in community based education. Youth Radio has received prestigious awards, including a George Foster Peabody Award, two Edward R. Murrow Awards and the Alfred I. DuPont/Columbia University Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism.

Pieces

Caption: Jace McDonald,16, stands in front of his high school’s bathrooms in El Cerrito, California. Under current California law, students have the right to use the school bathroom that corresponds with their preferred gender., Credit: Teresa Chin
Young people increasingly see gender as not just limited to male and female. Youth Radio has been exploring the torchbearers of gender fluidity -- ...

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio


  • Added: Dec 09, 2015
  • Length: 04:34
  • Purchases: 1
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For most teens, going to sleep is the best part of the day. But for Youth Radio's Zildjian Shane, sleeping has always been a struggle.

  • Added: Aug 20, 2015
  • Length: 01:03
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Youth Radio's Natalie Battendorf discovers how taking a wrong turn can lead to the right path.

Bought by WAMC


  • Added: Aug 20, 2015
  • Length: 01:08
  • Purchases: 1
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Youth Radio's Billy Cruz enjoys producing films as his way to express himself artistically, but his high school didn't see his films as art.

  • Added: Aug 19, 2015
  • Length: 01:03
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Youth Radio's Justin Cruz has always struggled with anxiety, even as early as fifth grade. But as he's getting ready to start his junior year of hi...

  • Added: Aug 19, 2015
  • Length: 01:04
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Youth Radio's Nanette Thompson has to lead with her wallet rather than her dream when it comes to picking her college.

  • Added: Aug 19, 2015
  • Length: 01:04
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Samone Perry shares with Youth Radio her concerns about feeling safe at school, as she's getting ready to start her junior year of high school.

  • Added: Aug 18, 2015
  • Length: 01:04
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As Youth Radio's Soraya Shockley heads off to college, she's making sure to soak up pieces of the Bay Area she loves the most.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:08
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Youth Radio's Soraya Shockley talks about her dilemma as the smart girl in school.

Bought by WAMC


  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:07
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: PRX default Piece image
Youth Radio's Billy Cruz grew up dreaming of the day he would join the family business... but when the time finally came, his dream job wasn't all ...

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:03
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Youth Radio's Zildjian Shane shares why he thinks his chances of getting in to a great college are closed to none.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:05
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In this commentary Youth Radio's Desmond Meagley explains why family time at his home is often overshadowed by technology.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:08
Caption: PRX default Piece image
It’s a weekly ritual for some girls—stopping by the make-up counter to check out the latest beauty lines. At 19, Youth Radio’s Joi Morgan makes it ...

Bought by WAMC


  • Added: Jan 15, 2015
  • Length: 05:27
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: PRX default Piece image
Teen challenges her dad about who is more addicted to their cell phone.

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio and PRX Remix


  • Added: Jan 15, 2015
  • Length: 06:21
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Three high school students in Oakland, Calif., swap photos using Snapchat. (Ike Sriskandarajah)
A new photo-sharing app has quickly become popular-- especially among teens--precisely because its photos have limited lives--10 seconds at the mo...

  • Added: Dec 13, 2013
  • Length: 03:05
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A few of our favorite Youth Radio stories from the past year.

  • Added: Dec 10, 2013
  • Length: 14:29
Caption: Author Myles Bess with community leader Arnold Perkins., Credit: Photo: Brett Myers - Youth Radio/ BY-NC-SA
Youth Radio's Myles Bess came of age in-between the shootings of Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin. He asks other black men in Oakland for advice on h...

Bought by PRX Remix


  • Added: Jul 16, 2013
  • Length: 04:39
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Students and staff eat a Thanksgiving dinner at Youth Radio., Credit: Youth Radio
The study of gratitude is a burgeoning field within positive psychology. Across the board, results show that people who are more thankful are less ...

Bought by KDNK and PRX Remix


  • Added: Nov 22, 2011
  • Length: 04:25
  • Purchases: 2
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Among the thousands of protesters to amass in Lower Manhattan in the past month are out-of-towners from across the country. One of them was 16-year...

Bought by The Story


  • Added: Nov 10, 2011
  • Length: 04:16
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: PRX default Piece image
For young people who were in elementary school on 9-11, they've grown up hearing about Osama bin Laden and came of age during the War on Terror. Wa...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh


  • Added: May 03, 2011
  • Length: 03:15
  • Purchases: 1