Making Differences With Next Generation Nations 

by Aziz Syed, Reporter

The Next Generations Nations (NGN) Club started last year as the first NGN chapter in Texas. The club was created with the goal of educating students about the challenges around the world and enlightening them about what they can do to positively affect societies both locally and globally. NGN believes that informing students about the problems the world faces and helping them understand their role in solving these issues will lead to a brighter future.  

Due to the virtual nature of school last year, NGN was unable to do many of the projects they wanted to, and as a result, the club was more lecture based and less interactive. Now, in-person meetings are held where students can meet and interact with one another. Meetings are generally held once a month, typically in the middle of the month on Thursdays. Co-president and senior Jenny Ong looks forward to getting to know the members of NGN and having a more interactive experience with the other students. 

“Last year it was a lot more on Zoom and generally black screens instead of seeing the faces of who was involved,” Ong said. “I think being able to share something with people in person adds a different value than being virtual.”

According to co-president and senior Brianna Zhang, the short-term goals of NGN this year primarily focus on getting more people to become a part of the club. Many students didn’t get the opportunity to learn about NGN and what it has to offer last year, and although the club has just started holding meetings this year, the student participation is already looking better than last year, with a turnout of 19 students at the first meeting. 

I’m excited to broaden our service projects and be a part of in-person experiences,” Zhang said. “This year we are expecting to have a much more interactive experience.” 

NGN offers students the opportunity to earn NHS and CAS service credits by participating in service projects. This year, the club strives to have at least one service project each month, this way there will be plenty of opportunities for students to earn the service hours they need for other organizations. NGN also offers workshops in which members can get reviews and feedback on their projects. The club has long-term goals that they want to complete throughout the school year such as creating a podcast where members can record an episode and talk about specific goals for that month as well as interview other members and students involved in NGN. 

“I think our long-term goal is just to increase our member count because we started last year in the second semester, so we’re still relatively new,” Ong said. “At school we learn about global issues but it’s not always an open discussion.”

At the beginning of the year, NGN International creates 21 goals that they would like to achieve by the end of the year. These goals involve a great number of global issues such as cleaning up the ocean and making healthcare available to everyone. NGN International holds an annual competition called NGN’s Global Challenges Competition, or NGCC, in which students from different schools choose a few of the 21 goals highlighted by NGN International, and come up with ways to achieve them. Students who wish to participate in this competition must pay a $15 entry fee, however members of the NGN club at school receive free entry into the competition . 

“If we can get more and more people each year to start participating in the competition, then it can become something really big at the school,” Zhang said. “I’m looking forward to meeting people who are passionate about the global issues we talk about.”