Blog | Freaks & Geeks

  • TeenNick Top 10 Is Back With Fifth Harmony!

    Posted on 02/19/2014 by baileyb2112

    It's the moment you've all been waiting for...TeenNick Top 10 is back! Your favorite music video countdown returns THIS FRIDAY at 10pm ET with new songs, new stars and new special guests.

    TeenNick Top 10


    This week, Nick Cannon will welcome one countdown favorite into TeenNick Headquarters. They're fierce, they're talented, there's five of them. Are you all ready for a little Fifth Harmony lovin'?! This power girl group made it big in 2013 (they were a TeenNick Top 10 Fresh Artist, after all), and we can't wait to see what 2014 brings for them!

    TeenNick Top 10


    Until then, you can help all of your favorite videos make it onto the countdown this week. Vote NOW for Friday's episode right here!

    TeenNick Top 10


    As always, don't forget to check out all of the songs in the running, including this week's new nominees, on TeenNick Top 10's Spotify playlist! Who will be crowned the king or queen of this week's countdown? Leave your best predictions in the comments and tune in this Friday at 10pm ET to find out!



  • Degrassi Recap: 'Power To The People'

    Posted on 02/19/2014 by Rachel1016

    Degrassians! It's safe to say that no hyperbole in the English language could adequately describe the craziness that was last night's episode of Degrassi. Seriously, it was so epic you might as well have called it "The Degroddyesy." (We know. It's so bad, it's good.) If you haven't seen "Power To The People" yet, make sure to watch it online right here before reading our recap!

    ARE YOU PLEASED WITH YOURSELF?
    Degrassi: Power To The People

    Drew enthusiastically began his volunteer position with Mr. Hollingsworth's campaign, but his new girlfriend, Zoe, was beginning to get in the way. She made unannounced appearances while Drew was on the job, talked about doing whatever she could to spend more time with him, and displayed a wee bit too much public affection in front of Mr. H.

    Worried that Zoe's clinginess might put his job in jeopardy, Drew felt like he needed to break it off with Zoe completely. But when he tried to tell her he wouldn't have "time" for a relationship, he didn't make it clear to Zoe their (very brief) romance was officially over. He made a vague statement about how busy he would be with the campaign and she, understandably, didn't realize his words were, well, breakup words.

    Degrassi: Power To The People

    When Zoe showed up at Mr. H's campaign speech, an unknowingly not single Drew, became a little bit... well, confused? Agitated? Perturbed? All of the above? He tried to tell Zoe he did not want to be with her once and for all, and she was completely heartbroken. She reminded him that they slept together, which...

    Degrassi: Power To The People


    And she made it clear how dastardly it was of him to diminish what a HUGE deal sleeping together actually was.

    Degrassi: Power To The People


    Well, Drew got what was coming to him, as Zoe's fierce mother marched into the auditorium like a lioness protecting her baby cub and demanded to know why Drew thought it was acceptable to take her daughter's virginity and then proceed to drop her like a hot potato. Ms. Rivas let it all out in front of the school, and Drew was completely mortified.

    After a brief meeting with Principal Simpson, Drew realized that he didn't think clearly about how his actions might have affected Zoe, and how sex is actually a huge deal, especially when it's someone's first time. Drew walked into school the next day, bouquet in hand, ready to apologize to Zoe, but it was going to take a lot more than flowers to make it up to her.

    Degrassi: Power To The People


    Degrassi: Power To The People


    With a little guidance from his mom, Mrs. Torres, who poignantly explained how selfish and insensitive his actions were, Drew reflected on his behavior. He decided it was time to be a more thoughtful, compassionate guy. Now, let's see if he can really apologize to Zoe.

    DRESS TO PROGRESS
    Degrassi: Power To The People

    Imogen continued her dress code crusade this episode, but when she showed up to school dressed as a nun, it seemed like the movement was a little more spectacle and a little less progress.

    Degrassi: Power To The People


    Imogen was delighted to see other girls getting involved, but several of the freshmen took the protest as an opportunity to dress promiscuously.

    Degrassi: Power To The People

    Principal Simpson, however, was nun too pleased about the Niners chanting "Bra rules are for fools!" throughout the halls. So, he encouraged Imogen to turn her fire into a real opportunity for change, and Imogen took to amending the dress code!

    Degrassi: Power To The People

    As she and Becky began to brainstorm changes, they came to the realization that any dress code could, theoretically, infringe upon people's freedom. They came to the conclusion that dressing appropriately is all about intention: If you're trying to distract guys with a low-cut shirt, you're going to get in trouble. If you forget to wear a bra one day, you deserve a hall pass. Specific rules were out the window, and the new mission of the dress code was to respect the school and respect yourself. Amen, sister friend!

    CHEMISTRY IS SCIENCE
    Degrassi: Power To The People

    Alli asked Jenna to be her lab assistant, but Jenna was more concerned with Alli getting therapy to help her cope with the Leo debacle. Alli was all�

    Degrassi: Power To The People


    And she got annoyed with Jenna for insisting upon something she just wanted to put out of her mind. In Alli's eyes, science was supposed to an escape, and it was frustrating because she couldn't even do it as well as she used to. A few minutes of arguing with Jenna in the hall, and Alli's lab coat was in the trash.

    But guess who fished it out for her?

    Degrassi: Power To The People

    Dallas sympathized with Alli over losing something important to him (he got kicked off the ice hockey team, remember?) and helped her realize that it wasn't like her to give up so easily. He even offered to be her lab assistant, but under one condition: They couldn't talk about anything "personal."

    Iiiiintersting. Does this mean Dallas has personal feelings to not talk about?

    Degrassi: Power To The People

    I mean, he did ask Drew for advice on "unrequited love for a science nerd."


    That's about it for this week, Degrassians! Tell us what you thought about the episode in the comments below!

  • '90s Are All That: Our Favorite Clips From 'Are You Afraid Of The Dark?'

    Posted on 02/14/2014 by Rachel1016

    Are You Afraid Of The Dark


    Submitted for the approval of the Midnight Society, we call this story "Our Favorite Clips From 'Are You Afraid Of The Dark?'"


    A spoiled rich kid and his babysitter set off to his aunt's house. Melissa Joan Hart guest stars in this spooky tale that begins the way all great ghost stories do: with mysterious footprints in the mud.


    When Melissa's friend Susan mysteriously disappears, she finds out that she's been turned into a porcelain doll. They're both trapped in the dollhouse and unsure whether or not the curse can be reversed. Excuse us while we put our childhood toys back in their boxes…


    As if we need to explain why clowns are actually the scariest things on earth, when Josh bets he can steal the nose of Zeebo the Clown, the creepy jester goes after him. A-DUH!


    Honestly, is there anything less appealing than an old hospital at night? After volunteering for the night shift, Amanda learns there's a vampire on the loose, and proceeds to confirm our fear that never needed to be confirmed in the first place.


    Ghost children, pleading messages, and blood-curdling screams are standard AYAOTD fare. The writing's on the wall. Literally!

    What are some of your favorite memories from AYAOTD? Share them with us in the comments!

  • Melinda's Beauty Blog: Gym To Class Tips!

    Posted on 02/13/2014 by Melinda Shankar

    Melinda's Beauty Blog: Gym To Class


    You know and love Melinda Shankar as Alli Bhandari on Degrassi, but if you've followed her outside of the show, you've probably noticed she has a knack for style and beauty. We are so excited because Melinda has offered to share her image expertise with us in a brand-new beauty blog! Over the next few weeks, Melinda will periodically pop in to answer questions you sent us via Facebook and Twitter about hair, makeup, skincare and everything in between. She's taking to the blog to share all of her secrets, so stay tuned!

    FAN QUESTION: Do you have any solutions for freshening up after gym class? I always just put my hair in a ponytail but it's getting very boring.

    Growing up heavily involved in extracurricular physical activity, I'd often have a workout before school. Having the time to wash your hair isn't always easy, especially when hurrying off to an early morning class! Depending on the occasion, you can:

    1. Create alternate options for your hairstyle: You can try braids, a half up / half down style, or clipping your hair up to create a small poof!

    2. Accessories: Pull your hair back with headbands, clips, cute fashionable hats (if it's not against your school's dress code) or clip in hair extensions to create volume!

    3. Dry shampoo: One of my key products to freshen up my hair when needed, the aerosol spray consists of fine, non-coloured oil-absorbing powders. Spray it in, leave for about 30 seconds, flip your head upside down, shake your hair out by massaging your scalp lightly, brush your hair - et voil�! A quick fix for sweaty hair!

    Hailing from Canada's capital, Ottawa, Melinda Shankar joined the cast of�Degrassi�in its eighth season as Sav Bhandari's little sister, Alli. Prior to this, she did runway and print modeling. Melinda's passion for beauty has led her to a new position as CEO of Miss Conception image consulting.

  • Degrassi Recap: 'Dig Me Out'

    Posted on 02/12/2014 by Rachel1016

    Last night's episode of Degrassi was all about taking things to the next level. Drew and Zoe got closer (much closer), Imogen started a girl-power protest, and Alli began to feel like her old self. If you haven't seen "Dig Me Out" yet, make sure to watch it online right here before reading our recap!

    SO OVER BOYS
    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    After two painful episodes, Alli finally was able to begin the healing process. She started to get back on her own two feet, both regaining her independence and focusing on her old love, science. But now that Leo's behind her, there was one thought we all couldn't help but think: Maybe, just maybe, she'll finally give Dallas a chance.

    Take this moment, for instance: As Alli was trying to open her locker with one arm in a sling, Dallas stopped in the hall to help her out. She insisted that she had it under control, but let us shamelessly over-analyze her look of longing as he walked away:

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out


    I mean, don't get us wrong, we are thrilled that Alli is "so over boys," and we think it's important for her to embrace her independence and love herself for a while. But you know what they say… one dreamy stare is worth a thousand words. (Yeah, yeah, we know they don't say that.)

    IS THAT A BRA-BLEM?
    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    While Alli was contemplating her feelings (or lack thereof), Imogen was busy getting dismissed from class for forgetting to wear a bra. According to Madame Jean-Aux, her wardrobe was "distracting" to the other students, which, in translation, means that Luke Baker and a few other boys in the class couldn't be mature enough to not make fun of her unsupported lady parts. Come on, the girl was just running a little late!

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    Imogen was humiliated, so she told Simpson that there was no specific language in the dress code about wearing (or not wearing) a particular undergarment. She made an excellent point and, although Simpson referred to "community standards" for appropriate dress, Imogen thought the reasons for her dismissal were unclear, unfair, and sexist.

    Imogen decided to use Degrassi TV to protest the preposterous dress code violation. She told Simpson that he would never have to question whether or not she was wearing a bra again and, man oh man, did she keep her word.

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out


    A handful of other girls joined the movement by wearing their bras over their shirts, and before we knew it, the halls of Degrassi turned into some sort of amazing feminist tacky day. Imogen's bravery totally deserved a round of applause, but we probably could have guessed that Simpson's reaction was going to be a little less "BRA-VO!" (pun 100% intended) and a little more "I'm taking away your broadcast privileges."

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    But Imogen's fight wasn't over! She decided that if she couldn't make her voice heard on-air, she'd do it online. And thus, she made an "Anti-Degrassi Dress Code" FaceRange page. So the battle continues…

    ALL IN

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    Hot off the heels of their first official date, Zoe and Drew started getting closer. Serious make-out sessions between class and Zoe getting Drew to ditch his poker game with Connor, Dallas and Clare for a party, would suggest that they were in an offish relationship. Drew insisted they were not.

    Hmm…

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out



    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    Later on at the party, Miles nearly humiliated Zoe by saying she wasn't invited. So Zoe, trying save face in front of her frenemies, introduced Drew as her boyfriend.

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out



    Drew eventually confessed to Zoe that he didn't want anything serious. And at first she was disappointed, but then she said that they should just keep having fun, and there was no need to label it. Drew liked the sound of that.

    But then they took a big step that neither of them will ever be able to take back: Zoe and Drew went all the way. And when Zoe crashed the rescheduled poker game the next day, it was clear the whole "let's keep it casual" thing was officially chucked out the window. Final bets were placed, and Zoe said…

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out


    When Drew realized that his odds weren't looking so good, he decided to be straight with Zoe. But before he could cut ties, Zoe dropped a bomb on him: Their one time together, was her first time.

    Degrassi: Dig Me Out

    In order to not hurt her feelings, Drew decided they should change their FaceRange status to "In A Relationship." And even though it might have seemed like the noble thing to do, it was pretty clear where Drew's heart was. (Like, somewhere very far away. Maybe Egypt). What do you think? Was he a knight in shining armor? Or making way for an even bigger disaster?


    Until next week, chat all things Degrassi in the comments below!

  • '90s Are All That: Our Favorite Clips From 'Rugrats!'

    Posted on 02/07/2014 by Rachel1016
    Rocko's Modern Life

    Never underestimate what lies inside a child's mind! Tommy, Chuckie, Angelica and the gang might may have barely had their baby teeth, but they taught us that the simplest of things can become the greatest of journeys. Check out some of our favorite Rugrats memories below, then share yours in the comments!


    Aw man, Grandpa Boris and the babies are trapped in the attic on Passover. To pass the time, Boris tells the story of the story of Moses, in which Angelica fittingly imagines herself as the Pharaoh who oppressed the Hebrews. Pharaoh Angelica sits pretty on her throne, but it's not too long after she's showered with cupcakes and Rockstar Cynthia dolls that Moses demands, "LET MY BABIES GO!" And that's why Passover is so important.


    Chuckie finds an old photo of his mom, who passed away sometime ago. Despite his pop's hesitation to share memories with Chuckie, he opens up about the mom his son never got to know. He shares a moving poem that Chuckie's mom wrote for little Chuckie, and we share a good cry with our computer screen.


    How 'Reptar On Ice' never became a real, beloved, skating spectacular, we will never know. I mean, is there anything more touching than the love between a woman and a dinosaur?


    There's no business like show business! Phil and Lil are off to become big baby diaper stars, but it appears the twins are having trouble really sharpening their craft. That, or they're just babies.


    Tommy decides to illustrate his life in a home movie, and even though some some might consider a magnificently squiggly mess, it's really bonafide artistic masterpiece.


    Holy horse feathers, the play ground is turning into the Wild Wild West! Tommy and Chuckie are the new cowboys in town, and Junk Food Kid is a total scalawag (who actually makes Angelica look like a saint). When Tommy decides that someone needs to teach this Junk Food Kid a lesson, he stands up for kid-kind, saves the school playground, and restores all that shines!


    When Rugrats see a giant pool of water, they don't think pool, they think giant toilet. And since nothing is more fun than flushing toilets, the baby sinkers mount the diving board (which they mistake for the handle flusher) and launch all the parents into MAJOR panic mode.


    It was only a matter of time before Stu's crazy inventions got him in trouble... When he falls and hits his head, mild amnesia leads Stu to believe he's a baby! And Tommy and the gang realize that Stu has "growed down" into the biggest baby "they ever sawed."


    Everyone knows that Angelica is a big bully and a liar, but after believing her own fib about the sky falling, the group prepares for the End of the World. And we don't know about you, but if regular Angelica sounds bad, post-apocalyptic Angelica sounds pretttty miserable.


    Meet Susie Carmichael! She just moved in next door, and she's really excited to show Tommy her new room. Only problem is, she can't quite find it in the house�

    What are some of your favorite memories from Rugrats? Share them with us in the comments!

  • Melinda's Beauty Blog: Five Minute Makeup Routine

    Posted on 02/06/2014 by Melinda Shankar

    Melinda's Beauty Blog: Five Minute Makeup


    You know and love Melinda Shankar as Alli Bhandari on Degrassi, but if you've followed her outside of the show, you've probably noticed she has a knack for style and beauty. We are so excited because Melinda has offered to share her image expertise with us in a brand-new beauty blog! Over the next few weeks, Melinda will periodically pop in to answer questions you sent us via Facebook and Twitter about hair, makeup, skincare and everything in between. She's taking to the blog to share all of her secrets, so stay tuned!

    FAN QUESTION: I'm so lazy in the morning and I rarely have time to put on any makeup. Do you have a good five minute plan that I can follow?

    Although we'd like to look red carpet ready every moment of the day, we simply don't have the time each morning to get that dolled up. I came up with a basic makeup routine to say "I care about my image..and my beauty sleep!"

    1. A light liquid foundation that doubles as extra skin moisturizer to keep skin looking healthy and fresh. Apply it over your entire face with either a sponge, a foundation brush, or even with your own fingers!

    2. A rosy pink creme lipstick. It's neutral but alive, a subtle touch of glam.

    3. Optional: A skin-coloured eye shadow all over the lid (feel free to use shimmer or non shimmer options).

    4. A healthy dose of mascara. On top of completing your makeup look, it will also open your eyes up giving the illusion that you're wide awake!

    5. With a foundation or concealer 2 shades lighter than your skin tone, use your fingers and pat the product under your eyes to highlight and brighten up your look!

    If you have extra time (for a bold touch): Liquid eyeliner on the top lid only, slightly winged out.

    Melinda's Beauty Blog: Five Minute Makeup


    Et voila! A little more than a fresh face, but less than your party look!


    Hailing from Canada's capital, Ottawa, Melinda Shankar joined the cast of�Degrassi�in its eighth season as Sav Bhandari's little sister, Alli. Prior to this, she did runway and print modeling. Melinda's passion for beauty has led her to a new position as CEO of Miss Conception image consulting.

  • Degrassi Web Of Love: A Comprehensive Relationship Flowchart

    Posted on 02/06/2014 by Rachel1016

    Ever wonder how Jimmy is connected to Declan? Or how Miles is connected to… Fiona? Well Degrassi fans, in honor of Valentine's Day fast approaching, we decided to map out every major couple that's ever existed over thirteen seasons of the show. That's right, we dug deep into the Degrassi relationship archives to show you all of the characters who've done a little dating do-si-do!

    Now, for all you Degrassi purists out there, we couldn't count every single kiss that's ever been shared on the show. (And really, who wants to remember that one time Declan and his sister kissed, anyway?) But you'll know that Miles dated Zoe, who kissed Drew, who broke Katie's heart, who ended up with Jake, who once had a thing with Clare, who's dating Eli, who used to be with Imogen, who was in love with Fiona! Behold.

    Degrassi Web of Love
  • Degrassi Recap: 'Better Man'

    Posted on 02/05/2014 by Rachel1016

    Last night, in an all-new Degrassi, we watched the Degrassians begin to pick up the pieces that were left from an epic premiere episode. If you haven't seen "Better Man" yet, make sure to watch it online right here before reading our recap!

    Degrassi: Better Man

    MAKEOVER MONDAY
    Maya really wanted to fit in with Grace and the rest of the students in the Rubber Room, so she asked Tristan to give her a total bad-girl makeover.

    Degrassi: Better Man
    As she walked into class wearing her new look (which was complete with heavy eye-liner, combat boots, and a nose ring), Grace noticed and determined that Maya, y'know, could hang. Grace invited her to skip class with the rest of the Rubber Room kids, and even though BF Miles questioned her need to fit in based on appearance and playing hooky (to be fair, not without calling her a "cute weirdo"), Maya gladly accepted Grace's invitation.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    While Maya and the rest of the crew were hanging out at the picnic tables, Zig straight up pulled out a BB gun. And while we were all, "Ummm, I think we're moving a little too fast? Let's take this slow?" Zig insisted that if Maya really wanted to hang with them, she had to hold on to the gun. Next thing we know, Maya's standing in an empty classroom aiming the gun at a fish tank. �A fish tank! Clearly desperate to be initiated into the Rubber Room crew, Maya pointed the gun at the fish tank, prepared to vandalize the school and kill a bunch of innocent gill-bearing creatures, when…

    Degrassi: Better Man

    …she realized the gun was just a toy. Oh Zig, that was some high caliber humor. (Not.)

    Degrassi: Better Man

    Thankfully, the prank brought Maya to her senses, and she realized that trying to fit in with the kids in the Rubber Room wasn't worth the terrible decisions that would likely ensue. She stood up to Zig and Grace, and insisted that she, and in fact they all, deserved to get out of the Rubber Room and be treated as students, not delinquents.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    In the end, Grace actually respected Maya for having the guts to speak her mind. And we sure do, too.

    Degrassi: Better Man
    YOU MEAN A REAL DATE?
    Still a little wounded by Clare's apparent lack of interest in him, Drew hoped landing a Youth Advisor job on Mr. Hollingsworth's campaign would restore his confidence. (Side note: Is Drew, like, worried that the universe will implode if every single girl doesn't want to scrawl "Mrs. Drew Torres" in her notebook or something?) He was stressed about being ill-prepared for the interview, so Dallas suggested that Drew find someone who gives him all the attention that he needs. Enter Zoe: who conveniently showed up and offered to coach him.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    When they got together, Zoe started giving Drew advice like, "Lean forward. Look deep into their eyes. Command the space." And well, things got a lil' intimate. After one obligatorily long stare into eachother's eyes, boom: Drew kissed Zoe. And before we could say "pump the brakes," Zoe told Drew he could kiss her any time. So he continued.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    When it finally came time for Drew's interview with Hollingsworth, he barely said "hello" before Mr. H discovered a little love bruise on Drew's neck. Apparently one thing led to another with Zoe and, yep, always good to have a potential employer spot a hickey on your neck. But Drew, being the natural born politician that he apparently was, recovered and landed the job.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    Not long after, Drew shared the good news with Zoe and asked her out to celebrate. Somehow, Zoe got Drew to define it as a real date, and it occurred to us that things might be getting serious. But then, he walked by Clare and said "I guess some girls just like sideburns," and three words came to mind: Not. Over. It.

    What do you think? Is Drew using Zoe to stroke his ego? Or should we expect #Zrew coming down the pike?

    Degrassi: Better Man
    JUSTICE AND TRUTH
    At the end of last episode, moments after they got married, Alli was brutally attacked by Leo. To cover up the fact that her new husband had abused her (for the third time), Alli told her parents she was mugged. And as the investigator tried to gather facts about the incident, Alli made it clear to us that she wasn't ready to face the reality of her situation. She couldn't turn Leo in, so she continued to give them false information. Regardless of the fact that this terrible, terrible thing could have been prevented, how confusing and devastating must it have been for Alli to grapple with truly loving someone who so deeply, and unforgivably, hurt her.

    Amidst all of this, Leo made multiple attempts to get in contact with Alli; texts and missed calls started to flood her phone. She finally answered one of his phone calls and told Leo that if he agreed to annul their marriage, she wouldn't go to the cops. Leo, however, vowed that he couldn't and wouldn't live without her. He followed Alli to school, waited for her outside, and stalked her until she finally told both Jenna and Clare the truth about incident.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    They immediately insisted she call the cops.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    As Alli watched the police handcuff and arrest Leo, it was a moment both triumphant and heartbreaking. She had the courage to bring him to justice, to stand up to her abuser, but you could see the hurt in her eyes as she realized, once and for all, the love of her life was a total stranger. Alli's story painfully but poignantly illustrates the truth about domestic violence: it is a very complex, serious, and real issue. Remember, if you or anyone you know is involved in an abusive relationship, you are not alone. There are resources available, and people who want to help.

    Degrassi: Better Man

    Toward the end of the episode, Alli started to get rid of everything in her room that reminded her of Leo, including her engagement ring. Jenna walked in and brought her the annulment papers wrapped in a bow, a belated birthday cupcake, and a much-need reminder that best friends really are the best.


    Alright, Degrassians. You've heard our thoughts, now we want yours! What do you think about what you saw? Will Alli find the strength she needs to recover? Will Drew and Zoe become an official thing? Will Zig and Maya continue to butt heads? Sound off in the comments!

    In the meantime, here's what's happening next week!



  • Q&A With February HALO Effect Honoree: DeQuan O'Neal

    Posted on 02/05/2014 by Rachel1016

    HALO Effect: DeQuan O'Neal


    TeenNick fans, it's time to keep the HALO spirit alive!

    Since announcing our year-long initiative to spread the HALO Effect, we've received many nominations recognizing teens who inspire to Help And Lead Others through service. The HALO Effect is all about celebrating young people who do good, and we're so excited to congratulate our February HALO Effect honoree, a true champion of change, DeQuan O'Neal!

    DeQuan is a high school senior from Detroit, Michigan, who has devoted himself to several organizations that directly and positively impact his community. He is an advisory board member of the Neighborhood Service Organization's Youth Initiatives Project, a representative of the anti-violence "Hugs Not Bullets" Campaign, and a founding member of the "Grads Not Inmates" Campaign at his own school.

    A truly driven and compassionate young man, DeQuan gave us exclusive insight into his work aimed at suppressing violence, promoting education, and empowering at-risk youth. Read his full bio here, and check out our exclusive Q&A below!

    Congratulations on your HALO Awards recognition! What inspired you to get involved in the Neighborhood Service Organization's Youth Initiatives Project?
    My mother and teacher, Mr. Miller, inspired me to get involved in the Neighborhood Service Organization Youth Initiatives Project. Mr. Miller made a promise to my mother. He promised my mother he was going to give me the guidance to become a man.

    Gun violence is an extremely pressing issue in our society, and as a youth advocate you bring a very important point of view. Tell us a little bit about your involvement with the 2012 "Hugs Not Bullets" Campaign.
    In 2012, I hosted the 8th Annual "Hugs Not Bullets" Press Conference. I encouraged my community to put the guns down and celebrate the New Year [a night typically fraught with violence] with a hug.

    "Grads Not Inmates" is a wonderful campaign you helped launch at your high school to help promote educational opportunities for youth, while staying away from situations that might cause incarceration. What has been your most proud achievement with this initiative?
    My most proud achievement with "Grads Not Inmates" was our Empowerment Breakfast. The breakfast was the first time some young men in my community ate and had a positive conversation with [other] grown men. Also, young men had the opportunity [to find] employment. Ninety-five percent of those men who attended gained employment for the summer.

    Since you've already been accepted to college, do you plan to continue your efforts while you pursue your degree? Have you thought about a major?
    Yes, I will continue my efforts of advocating for my community while I pursue my degree. I will never stop advocating for change. I plan on double majoring in Marketing and Social Science.

    You were recently appointed an Advisory Board Member for the Chief of Police Department of Detroit. As the only youth member currently on the Board, what does your involvement entail?
    As the only youth member on the Advisory Board for the Chief of Police of Detroit Police Department, my involvement is the same as all the other members. I just bring a youth perspective to the table.

    What advice would you give to kids who want to make a change, but worry their voice won't be heard?
    Advice I would give to youth who want to make a change: "Youth hold the keys to any revolution".

    Through your work and dedication, what long term effects do you hope to see within your community?
    I hope to unite people within my community, and I hope to see everyone working together: One cause, one purpose, one movement.

    Do you know any truly inspiring teens who are making an impact like DeQuan? Nominate them here!