We sat down with Talisha Skinner, a senior at Alain LeRoy Locke College Preparatory Academy. This year Talisha won the Boys and Girls Club of Carson Youth of the Year award and competed in the Youth of the Year nationals. We spoke with Talisha about being a Youth of the Year honoree, what makes Locke special, and her future.
How has your experience at Locke shaped who you are today?
Before attending Alain LeRoy Locke College Preparatory Academy I was not much of a leader; I felt as though I was not even my own person. Frankly, I didn’t know who the real Talisha Skinner was. Through my studies and extracurricular activities at Locke, I’ve developed a better understanding of who I am and the person I want to grow into-- and that is a leader. If I did not attend Locke I would not have known that I actually enjoy public speaking. At Locke I am the student that teachers and student leaders go to when they need a student speaker. I have been fortunate to represent my school in a lot of different ways, I’ve sat on many student panels, I’ve served as a school tour guide, and so much more. These opportunities have enhanced my speaking skills and built up my confidence.
What does leadership mean to you?
A great leader steps up to create structure and provide those around them with guidance, and is willing to do whatever it takes to drive their team to success. If I did not attend Locke, I wouldn’t be the leader that I am today.
What extracurricular activities have you participated in at Locke?
At Locke I play varsity volleyball, I’m cheer captain, and also sit on student panels. I’m also proud to be a Big Sister in the Big Brother Big Sister program.
What does it mean to be a Youth of the Year honoree?
Having the honor to be considered the Youth of the Year means that I have the opportunity to impact others with my story. It also means that all the hardships I have experienced and the obstacles I’ve overcome have only made me better. When I was nominated, I could not believe it and I was shocked that the judges were impacted by my story. I know that there are a lot of people who grew up without a mother and a father, so I did not believe that my story mattered as much, but the judges proved me wrong. Attending Locke and being a part of the Boys and Girls Club has shown me that I am capable of accomplishing anything I put my mind to. The staff and students at the Boys and Girls club have been true supporters, just like my dad.
What’s next for Talisha Skinner?
After high school I plan on attending Howard University, though I’m not sure what I would like to study. However, what I do know is that my purpose in life is to help and motivate others.