(October 12th, 2018–Jersey City, NJ) Hudson County Schools of Technology’s County Prep High School social studies teacher, Jersey City Public Schools Board of Education Member and Hudson County Democratic Chair, Amy DeGise spoke with the 8th-grade class at Explore Middle School about politics, social activism, and voting for their upcoming Student Council election.
In June of 2018, DeGise broke the glass ceiling by becoming the first female Hudson County Democratic Organization Chair. The 8th-grade students prepared for her visit by creating questions for Ms. DeGise on her journey to this ground-breaking position.
As the Explore Middle School Student Council election nears, many of the students running for the President and Vice President position were seeking the chairwoman’s advice for a successful campaign. “Don’t make promises you can’t keep. But most importantly,” DeGise said, “always remain positive and come from a place of love.”
Ms. DeGise explained that the 2016 Presidential election inspired her not only to begin her run for the HCDO Chair but to also run for a full-term spot on the Jersey City Public Schools Board of Education. However, her passion for politics began long before 2016. DeGise told the 8th grade class that being a member of her high school student council was her first political position. In college, she continued staying active in politics by participating in local protests.
The students were eager to learn where Ms. DeGise’s inspiration came from. She has been passionate about making positive changes for as long as she can remember she shared. However, her father Tom DeGise, a Hudson County Executive, will always be her biggest inspiration. She encouraged the students, as candidates, to determine what issues mean the most to them and begin to think about real changes they can make.
Chairwoman DeGise expressed how proud she was of all the students running for a position on the Student Council and each of them who would participate by voting. She told the students that voting in any election was a privilege for all Americans and their civic duty. Ms. DeGise challenged the students to get at least 1 person they know to go out and vote this November.
The Explore Middle School Student Council Election will take place on Friday, October 19th.