Monday, December 14, 2020

Elijah Jones: It takes hard work to bring people together

My name is Elijah Jones and I am a 22-year-old senior at the University of Illinois Springfield studying communication. I plan on finishing my education at UIS on Dec. 16. I am a first-generation college student and the oldest of eight siblings.

I have been in Springfield since 2016 and the growth I have experienced is like nothing I could have ever imagined. I helped establish my university’s first modeling organization which I was president of for two of the three years since its foundation. Our organization was built on uplifting and pushing college men to succeed plus offering a support system of brotherhood. After college I plan to stay in Springfield to save up some money in order to move to Nevada and begin working with Habitat for Humanity while working toward my goal of becoming an event planner.

During this fall semester, I have worked as an intern for the Faith Coalition for the Common Good. I have learned a lot about what goes into community organizing to bring about systemic change. I have also learned that organizing an event is more than just “event planning.” It takes hard work to bring people together and for them to understand why it is in their self-interest to work together to build power for change. These are skills I will be able to use in the future."

This profile was published in The State Journal-Register on December 13, 2020.