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Student Leadership and Student Service Learning

MCPS PeaceJam

An international leadership development and service learning program for students


Spring 2022 MCPS PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic Youth Conference

PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic hosted their annual youth conference “Compassion in Action” at Northwood High School in Silver Spring, MD, on April 23, 2022. The featured guest was children’s rights activist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient Kailash Satyarthi. Kailash Satyarthi won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2014 for leading a global movement to end child slavery and exploitive child labor practices. The leadership conference provided select high school youth (Grades 9-12) with the amazing opportunity to spend the day with a world leader for peace and engage with hundreds of change agents from around their region.


Program Overview

Montgomery County Public Schools has partnered with PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic, a regional affiliate of the international education program that has provided more than 1.3 million youth across the globe with award-winning educational curriculum, service learning, and conferences hosted by Nobel Peace Prize winners. PeaceJam has a proven track record of empowering young people, engaging them in service, and supporting their development as positive members of their schools and communities. PeaceJam’s mission is to create young leaders committed to positive change in themselves, their communities, and the world through the inspiration of 14 Nobel Peace Laureates who pass on the spirit, skills, and wisdom they embody.

Program Details

PeaceJam reviewsPeaceJam implements leadership development curriculum through direct service-oriented programming to small cohorts of MCPS high school students through weekly sessions. PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic staff, MCPS staff, and Montgomery College student mentors partner together to lead the weekly sessions, assist the students in service project planning, and prepare students to lead their service projects to impact their community. Students present their service projects at a culminating weekend conference hosted by PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic in collaboration with MCPS in which students engage directly with a Nobel Laureate and other student leaders who have participated in PeaceJam programming from across the Mid-Atlantic region.

How to Get Involved

All high school students in MCPS are invited and encouraged to apply for the PeaceJam program during the Fall and Spring application windows. Students who are selected for the program are placed into cohorts of 15-20 students, who meet weekly with the PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic Director, MCPS staff advisors, and Montgomery College mentors. Each semester consists of 14 weekly sessions. Students who participate in the PeaceJam program earn Student Service Learning (SSL) hours for their active engagement in direct, indirect, and/or advocacy service. Information about the application process will be posted here when the Fall and Spring application windows open.

MCPS PeaceJam Project Spotlight

Equity 4 Change

Equity 4 Change

MCPS PeaceJam hosted the Equity 4 Change Summit on June 26, 2021. This virtual event created by MCPS PeaceJam student leaders discussed education, environment, health equity, and women empowerment. More than 300 students attended workshops in breakout rooms and participated in a dialogue on these important issues with guest speakers from local organizations.

PeaceJam Pod

PeaceJam Pod

The PeaceJam Pod is a podcast hosted by students and young change makers from PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic, a regional affiliate of PeaceJam. Season One of the PeaceJam Pod was created and produced by MCPS PeaceJam students.
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Empowering Women

MCPS PeaceJam students and PeaceJam Mid-Atlantic, in partnership with PeaceJam Ghana, is developing a women’s empowerment program to combat child labor and female exploitation. In Ghana, there exists an exploitative labor process where women and young girls carry hundreds of pounds on their heads while getting paid as little as twenty cents. These “Kayayei” are faced with extremely unfair labor practices and are more vulnerable to malaria, HIV, and sexual assault. Through their long-term entrepreneurship training program, they aim to give these women a way out by creating more job opportunities for them, while simultaneously encouraging young girls to remain in school.
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