Malaika Wande, a 10th grader at Montgomery Blair High School, was named Councilmember for a Day on Nov. 15. Wande’s passion is advocating for affordable housing, especially for families looking to move from renting to owning a home. She proposes expanding affordable housing and ownership programs in Montgomery County due to the rise in prices in Montgomery County and across the state.
Montgomery County Councilmember Craig Rice has selected a student to be Councilmember for a Day since 2016. Councilmember Rice created the recognition to engage youth in the county to write about issues they care about and connect with their local government to enact change.
This year’s program was expanded to include a free, after-school, digital storytelling program for all students in Grades 8 through 12. Students were loaned iPads and worked with mentors to create a short video on a public policy issue important to them. Wande’s video message to her peers and the County Council was a simple but important one: “Although I’m just a teen, our voices make a difference. All it takes is just one step, day by day, to make a change.”