April 17, 2014

Risky Business conference set for next week in Ames

The 27th annual Risky Business conference is scheduled for next week on the Iowa State University campus, drawing professionals, parents and youth from across Iowa. This training summit focuses on critical issues confronting youth and professionals who work with them.

 Jane Larkin, community prevention coordinator for the Ames-based Youth and Shelter Services, says this year’s theme is social media and how to best harness its power.

Larkin says, “We’re looking at the impact that social media has had on youth and has had with adults on our relationship with youth over the past decade or so and how that’s really evolved.” Larkin says the one-day conference on Tuesday, May 1st, will feature two keynote speakers, one for the youth and one for the adults.

The youth keynote speaker is Marco Torres, an educator who was named California’s educator of the year for his accomplishments in the classroom and for his use of technology to empower minority students. He’ll focus on things like the iPod, iPhone and iPad. Larkin says despite all the negatives we may hear about Facebook and Twitter, there are some positives about social media, too.

She says, “It can really be used as a tool to connect with the youth, to use as a teachable moment and to really incorporate with our studies.” The conference will be held at the Scheman  Building on the Iowa State University campus.

Learn more at: www.yss.ames.ia.us

By Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City