On Sept. 28, student activists David Hogg and Samantha Fuentes will give a talk hosted by Cornell Public Service Center and The Kaplan Family about the impact of engaged and empowered youth.
Hogg and Fuentes were among the survivors of the Feb. 14, 2018, mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, during which 17 students and staff members died.
Shortly after the shooting, some of the student survivors formed an organization called Never Again to advocate reform to prevent future mass shootings.
Hogg and Fuentes helped to co-found the March for Our Lives movement with other peers, which featured a large demonstration on March 24, 2018. Gaining support from many politicians, activists and celebrities, an estimated 200,000 people came together in Washington, D.C., as well as in smaller protests across the nation.
‘We need to see real action from lawmakers. They have to actually mean it, take meaningful steps to save children’s lives,” Hogg said at the event.
In the summer of 2018, Hogg spent his time traveling the country advocating for gun control with other survivors of the shooting. They visited 75 cities in two months, according to New York Magazine. Hogg has also amassed a large social media following with over 1 million Twitter followers.
Hogg is currently a student at Harvard University, after taking a gap year following his high school graduation from Marjorie Stoneman Douglas in 2018.
Fuentes was injured in the shooting when a bullet went through her leg, and walked with a cane for a period of time after. She also had shrapnel lodged in her face and leg. Following the shooting, she did not return to school and completed her degree online.
“I want to be a part of Stoneman Douglas and I want to live out the rest of my high school career normally,” Fuentes told CNN in Feb. 2018. “But there’s no such thing as normal anymore.”
Fuentes currently does speaking engagements around the country and has worked with the organization Angel Faces, a non-profit that works with girls who have had disfiguring injuries according to WOOD-TV.
Attendees will have an opportunity to engage with Fuentes and Hogg prior to the event by submitting questions through this link. According to the Public Service Center, some will be asked at the event.
The talk will take place in Call Auditorium in Kennedy Hall and will begin at 2 p.m. The event is free and tickets can be accessed through CornellTickets.com.