UMass Dartmouth is hosting a regional youth summit this week designed to empower eight graders from Fall River and New Bedford.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, 515 students from Fall River and 776 students from New Bedford will attend the UMass Dartmouth Leduc Center for Civic Engagement Youth Summit in the university’s main auditorium.

Participating schools from Fall River will visit on Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and include Kuss, Morton, Talbot, Doran, Henry Lord.

Participating schools from New Bedford will visit on Wednesday from 9 a.m. to 11:30 p.m. and include Keith and Normandin.

Every year, UMass Dartmouth brings all seventh-grade students from Fall River and New Bedford to campus for a College Positive Campus Tour led by university students who share their journey to higher education. The following year, the now eighth-graders come back for the Youth Summit.

The Youth Summit looks to increase awareness and appreciation of the benefits and opportunities that higher education can create.

Here’s to UMD for giving young people an early look at the positive reasons why they should look to continue their education.

Phil Paleologos is the host of The Phil Paleologos Show on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 a.m. to 10 a.m. Contact him at phil@wbsm.com and follow him on Twitter @PhilPaleologos. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.

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