Youth Radio

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Youth Radio was founded in 1990 on the deeply held belief that underserved youth, ages 14-24 years old, have the creativity, technical skills and entrepreneurial spirit to become leaders in the multi-media industry and the community and to serve as mentors to other youth.

The heart of its pioneering efforts is to train young people from under-resourced public schools, community-based organizations, group homes and juvenile detention centers in broadcast journalism, media production and cutting-edge technology. Youth Radio offers professional development and technical skills training absolutely free of charge with the aim of preparing young people for pathways to meaningful careers. Youth Radio graduates leave with the soft and hard skills necessary to land jobs with employers from KCBS and KQED to the Port of Oakland and Google.

Each year Youth Radio introduces diverse groups of students to a broad spectrum of media-related careers and state-of-the-art technology. Its program goals are to strengthen basic life-skills, motivate them to graduate from high school and attend a two or four year university and prepare them for multi-media and other careers in the 21st Century Marketplace.

Youth Radio currently trains 1,300 youth each year to develop core competencies in audio, video, web and print and to produce the highest quality original media for the widest range of mainstream outlets. Its reporters are heard worldwide through radio, video and the Internet and through print media.

Seventeen years ago San Francisco’s KQED broadcast Youth Radio’s first two minute youth commentary. Today, more than 300 Youth Radio reports and commentaries are broadcast each year on National Public Radio programs such as All Things Considered and Morning Edition, on-line outlets like and iTunes and on public radio stations across the country. An estimated 27 million people hear and read the often overlooked perspectives of young people through Youth Radio’s work each year.

Youth Radio has become nationally and internationally known as a cutting edge youth development and media organization, weaving the fast end of the ‘digital curve’ with best practices and innovation in community based education. Youth Radio has received prestigious awards, including a George Foster Peabody Award, two Edward R. Murrow Awards and the Alfred I. DuPont/Columbia University Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism.


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2 Pieces

The Peabody Award winning investigation into child prostitution in Oakland, CA.

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10 Pieces

Youth Radio participants share their personal experiences in a commentary on issues that are important to them.

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5 Pieces

Youth Radio's the Best of What's the New What? is a great end-of-year round roundup of the most interesting and provocative trends from 2008. The series includes five stories from Youth Radio's popular weekly NPR series "What's the New What?" This series asks what new trends in youth culture are replacing old trends. In short: What's the New What?


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Youth Radio's Zildjian Shane shares why he thinks his chances of getting in to a great college are closed to none.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:05
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In this commentary Youth Radio's Desmond Meagley explains why family time at his home is often overshadowed by technology.

  • Added: Aug 12, 2015
  • Length: 01:08
Caption: PRX default Piece image
It’s a weekly ritual for some girls—stopping by the make-up counter to check out the latest beauty lines. At 19, Youth Radio’s Joi Morgan makes it ...

Bought by WAMC Northeast Public Radio

  • Added: Jan 15, 2015
  • Length: 05:27
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: PRX default Piece image
Teen challenges her dad about who is more addicted to their cell phone.

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio and PRX Remix

  • Added: Jan 15, 2015
  • Length: 06:21
  • Purchases: 2
Caption: Three high school students in Oakland, Calif., swap photos using Snapchat. (Ike Sriskandarajah)
A new photo-sharing app has quickly become popular-- especially among teens--precisely because its photos have limited lives--10 seconds at the mo...

  • Added: Dec 13, 2013
  • Length: 03:05
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A few of our favorite Youth Radio stories from the past year.

  • Added: Dec 10, 2013
  • Length: 14:29
Caption: Author Myles Bess with community leader Arnold Perkins., Credit: Photo: Brett Myers - Youth Radio/ BY-NC-SA
Youth Radio's Myles Bess came of age in-between the shootings of Oscar Grant and Trayvon Martin. He asks other black men in Oakland for advice on h...

Bought by PRX Remix

  • Added: Jul 16, 2013
  • Length: 04:39
  • Purchases: 1
Caption: Students and staff eat a Thanksgiving dinner at Youth Radio., Credit: Youth Radio
The study of gratitude is a burgeoning field within positive psychology. Across the board, results show that people who are more thankful are less ...

Bought by KBCS 91.3 FM Community Radio, KDNK, and PRX Remix

  • Added: Nov 22, 2011
  • Length: 04:25
  • Purchases: 3
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Among the thousands of protesters to amass in Lower Manhattan in the past month are out-of-towners from across the country. One of them was 16-year...

Bought by The Story

  • Added: Nov 10, 2011
  • Length: 04:16
  • Purchases: 1
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For young people who were in elementary school on 9-11, they've grown up hearing about Osama bin Laden and came of age during the War on Terror. Wa...

Bought by WRST-FM Oshkosh

  • Added: May 03, 2011
  • Length: 03:15
  • Purchases: 1