By Sophia Stunkard
2020: the year of a global pandemic, a historic presidential election, the fight for social change, and the year where everyone lost the concept of time. With everything that occured during 2020, we look into 2021 with many questions, in need of answers. In this article, I will dive into what this year has to bring to the table with a little help from Google, Jenks students, and statistics to see how 2021 will play out.
This new year is to bring new forms of creativity, style and sustainability. The message of ethical shopping has been widely discussed throughout social media platforms and teenagers have taken to their local thrift stores to reduce the tremendous amount of waste caused by the fashion industry. Along with thrift stores, there are numerous options to begin 2021 by giving back to your environment, and down below are some resources to help you step out of your comfort zone and try new alternatives to shop sustainably.
- Good On You is an app that provides you with numerous tips to shop sustainably, brands to look out for, and ways to better your fashion footprint. With an easy to navigate ethical brand rating system, you can discover new brands while seeing how your favorite brands measure up to the ethical scale without having to do extensive research.
- Depop is an app that allows you to buy, sell, and discover an array of unique clothing. With this app, you can begin clearing out all of your lounge-wear used in quarantine and shop used clothing from your favorite brands or new clothing to support small creators.
It has already been a year since the Coronavirus pandemic swept through the United States, causing the country to go into a nationwide lockdown. I conducted a survey in which 51 Jenks High School students responded with their predictions for the upcoming year. A section of this survey covered pandemic related questions and now I will be discussing the found statistics and probability of the findings.
Medical officials have made astronomical progress throughout the past year by creating both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines to treat Covid-19, and although these vaccinations are a vital step to lower the spread of Covid, there are many more factors that come into play.
In the survey, 34 percent of Jenks Students predicted that the majority of US citizens will not get the Covid vaccine, while 66 percent of students predicted that the majority of US citizens will get vaccinated. At this time, there is no solid statistical evidence over how many Americans will end up getting the vaccine by the end of the year because the main focus at the moment is getting sufficient vaccine supply and prioritizing high-risk individuals.
Although this year has begun with plenty of unknowns, it’s important to stay informed and aware especially in the age of a pandemic. In today’s day and age, it’s so simple to develop your own bubble around how you are receiving your information. With that, it is very important to check your sources every once in a while and stay up to date with what’s going on in the world around you.
To answer any Covid-19 related questions that you may have, I will be providing some reliable sources below:
- Cdc.gov, the center for disease control, provides you with up-to-date information regarding anything Covid-19 related. Whether you have questions about the best ways to social distance or you simply want to stay informed with new variants of the disease, the CDC is the best way to go.
- Jenks COVID, this link brings you to the site-wide covid information pertaining to Jenks Public Schools. This website lets you keep an eye out on how many positive and close-contact cases have been reported for each Jenks School so you stay informed as a student.
- Oklahoma Covid Info, this website provides state-wide statistics regarding the pandemic along with valuable information over where to get tested, vaccinated, and how to find guidance in the state of Oklahoma when dealing with Covid-19.
Political Climate and Advocacy for Social Change –
Taking a look back into 2020, we cannot help but remember the historical yet controversial year of politics. With the US Presidential election and the increasing demand for social change, 2021 begins with many questions being left unanswered.
As I mentioned before, 2020 was an eventful year for social change.With the Black Lives Matter protest that occured nationwide over the summer along with advocacy related content being consumed by social media, I have come to question if the strive for social change will continue into the new year. From the survey I created, I asked 51 students from JHS a few questions regarding their political predictions for the new year, here were the responses.
As seen from the survey results, most students lean towards a more positive outlook on the new year, one of these students in specific being Abby Vaughn (11). Here we will be looking through the eyes of Vaughn, a Jenks student and advocate for social justice and her views on the new year. When asked if the country will become more united or divided under the presidency of Joe Biden, Vaughn’s answer demonstrates mixed predictions.
“I don’t see the country becoming completely united under the presidency of Joe Biden because the raid on the capital demonstrated how polarized the nation can get, but I still have hopes that the country will grow as a nation and that everyone will just calm down a bit,” Shares Vaughn.
When questioned over whether the need for social change will continue into 2021, Vaughn shares a message of hope by saying:
“I think the need for change will only get stronger, especially after experiencing the push of the BLM movement, I think many more people and especially teenagers are going to come around and finally try to make their best efforts to help everyone work towards equality,” says Vaughn.
When asked what valuable lesson Vaughn will carry into to 2021, she left me with some great advice:
“When people reach out to you, have their back. Knowing who your friends are is something extremely important when going into the new year, and for 2021 it’s important to spend time with the people you love.”