It’s Full STEAM Ahead for Youth at Indiana Black Expo’s Summer Celebration

Indiana Black Expo, Inc. (IBE) kicked off its 47th annual Summer Celebration on Thursday, July 6th.  Events run through Sunday, July 16th.  One event that has been part of IBE’s Summer Celebration for the last 28 years is the Youth Leadership Summit (YLS).  This event, open to middle and high school students, give youth the opportunity to engage with professionals from various careers, gain leadership skills and learn how to advocate for themselves and their communities, and helps them to begin making a plan for their future.

Ariel Crawley, YLS Chair, shared that one of the main goals of YLS is to develop the youth’s leadership skills and she realized YLS was missing an opportunity to tap into those skills.  “Two years ago, we decided the youth who had participated in past summits should help us plan and organize the summits moving forward. It’s easy for adults to plan events for kids to do, but it might not translate well.”  The Youth Leadership Summit Council was created and they are responsible for choosing a theme, contacting vendors and sponsors, and brainstorming ideas for activities that will take place during the three-day summit.

Students who are part of the 2017 YLS Council are:

  • Tiera Howleit - Senior, Charles A. Tindley Accelerated High School
  • Chase Iseghohi - Sophomore, Fishers High School
  • Timothy Mckinstry - Senior, Charles A. Tindley Accelerated High School
  • Payten Morris - Senior, Bishop Chatard High School
  • Alecia Spaulding - Senior, North Central High School

This year’s theme is Full STEAM Ahead; STEAM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering, art, and math.  For the last eight years, Purdue University has sponsored YLS.  This is a great benefit to youth attending the summit because they are able to learn about the admissions process and STEAM academic options at Purdue.   There are many other organizations that are also supporting this event.  Apple will conduct a presentation on how youth can use technology to assist in the admissions process and the presentation will highlight apps students can use to help them in school. Lewis Stokes Alliance for Minority Participation, Salesforce, and Novo Nordisk Pharmaceutical Company will also be part of the summit.

Although registration for the summit closed, Friday, July 7th, there is one summit event that is free and open to the public, the Real Talk:  Conflict Resolution Teen Forum.  David Banner, rapper, and activist, will be the guest speaker.  This event will be held in the Sagamore Ballroom at the Indiana Convention Center on Saturday, July 15th from 4:00-5:30 PM.  If you are interested in your child(ren) attending next year, registration for the YLS takes place from March-June and the registration form can be found on IBE’s website.


To learn more about the YLS summit and other IBE events during 47th annual Summer Celebration, click here.