Kennett High School’s (KHS) Matthew Wilson hopes to change the world– and he’s starting right here in our community.
This Summer, the Senior was one of just 120 students selected to participate in the U.S. Department of State’s Youth Ambassador Program. Wilson traveled to Ecuador for two weeks, where he advanced his own leadership skills and fostered mutual understanding.
“I learned a lot,” he said. “It was just an amazing experience overall. Now that I’ve come back to the United States, I’m working on completing a required community project– an initiative called Juntos.”
Juntos means “together” in Spanish and, according to Wilson, its primary goal is to create a safe space for language learning.
An aspiring Foreign Service Officer, Wilson speaks at least some of five languages– English, Spanish, French, Portuguese and Mandarin.
“Kennett is a bilingual community,” he reflected. “Growing up here has made me realize that people need to be able to talk with one another. I took the initiative to learn Spanish. I think it would be easier for others to learn a language if they had a way to immerse themselves.”
Wilson currently hosts a meeting every Thursday at 5 p.m. in the Kennett Library. He has extended an open invitation to anyone who might be interested in attending the next session.
In the Fall, Wilson will be off to college– Princeton, the University of Virginia and Vanderbilt are his top picks. Until then, his plans for growth include creating official clubs at Kennett High School and Kennett Middle School (KMS)– as well as branching out beyond the District.
“Right now, we are largely students. I haven’t yet been able to reach out to many adults,” he said. “But I want to help everyone to make friends and to feel more a part of the community.”
KHS Principal Dr. Lorenzo DeAngelis praised Wilson’s efforts. “Matt was our Student of the Quarter for the Longwood Rotary and, to be honest, it was a very easy decision! We are all excited and looking forward to what he continues to bring to this world.”
Superintendent Dr. Dusty Blakey added “Matt is an example that we all can aspire to, as he works to unite our community by recognizing our bilingual strengths and by organizing a school-based club that brings together both English and Spanish speakers. He recognizes that we are all stronger when we work together as one.”