Delaware fifth grader offers her hopes for Biden at inaugural event centered around the youth voice
Tiana Sirmans has interviewed her share of interesting people.
The New Castle fifth grader and self-made entertainment journalist has asked questions of actor Michael B. Jordan and rapper Common. She’s spoken with ice cream scientists and interviewed Delaware State University President Tony Allen about his role in helping plan Wednesday’s inaugural.
Tiana now hopes to one day interview President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris.
“What are their plans for bringing America back together?” Tiana said she’d ask if given the chance. “What are their plans for Generation Z and helping them?”
This weekend, Tiana represented the youth voice in the National Children’s Inauguration, a virtual event held by the National Children’s Campaign.
STUDENT PERSPECTIVE:Fifth graders in Biden's old neighborhood offer him and Harris advice
At only 10, Tiana realized her love of reporting and interviewing people at age 6, when she took a kids' class on broadcast journalism. Since then, she’s reported for TIME for Kids and hosts her own web show, “Lights, Screen, Action.”
In her speech, the student at Colonial’s Pleasantville Elementary School said she hopes Biden, Harris and Congress can create a country “that reflects my generation. A generation that wants all people to be treated fairly and equally, cares about climate change and wants to end childhood hunger and homelessness.”
Tiana called on the president and vice president to prioritize children’s mental health, stemming gun violence and slowing the spread of COVID-19, so students like her can return to classrooms.
Just like adults, students across the country have eagerly followed the presidential election, discussing it with their peers and teachers. And for most of 2020, those classroom conversations happened via Zoom.
For Tiana and other girls her age, seeing Harris become vice president makes her feel proud.
“Especially seeing that she looks like me. She’s the vice president of the United States. She’s really smart. She’s really beautiful. I feel really proud knowing now we’ve had our first Black president and we’ve had our first Black female vice president.”
Tiana watched the inauguration with her mother.
“It’s great to be from Delaware, especially knowing that President Joe Biden is from Delaware,” Tiana said. “Even though it’s a small state, there’s a lot to do and a lot of great people that have come from it, including him.”
Natalia Alamdari covers education for The News Journal. You can reach her at (302) 324-2312 or email@example.com.