Joaddan Villard is a junior at Laurel High School. She originally began editing in 4th grade with the oh so famous “Movie Maker.” Now 17, she enjoys editing in her free time. Never passing up an opportunity to try something new, many things have helped her reach where she is today. Joaddan has participated in many programs such as Fresh Films where she won in the Quad Cities category. Not letting her film desire die, she also created a FIlm CLub at her school. Though Joaddan aspires to join the entertainment industry, that does not stop her from expanding her horizons. Other than editing, Joaddan also enjoys debating and speeches. Joaddan has won a Barack Obama Oratorical Contest and Multiple local film festivals. Energetic, multilingual, and optimistic, she aspires that one day her voice will be heard by people everywhere.

Click here or below to view Joaddan’s winning PSA!

Our Interview With Joaddan

Was this the first time you entered the contest?
Yes it was!

What inspired your work?
I really like public speaking and speaking in general. I liked the topic of civic conversations because it’s basically saying, “We have free speech… Why not use it?” We’re filtering ourselves unnecessarily. Honestly, everyday information we may think is common or taboo could really help someone who wasn’t taught the basics.

What did you learn while creating your entry?
I learned about civic conversations. I did not even know what the topic meant before creating the video, but I ended up doing a ton of research and I found out how much I liked the topic and agreed with its meaning. Say what you want to say, people!

How do you plan to spread the word this year to your peers about the importance of the U.S Constitution?
This year and last year was crazy. So many events went on that it’s probably going down in history. One of my favorite things that occurred was actually the rallies/protests for equality and freedom. Equality is something that I love to talk about, and the oppressed’s given rights are right there in the constitution, so when I’m speaking about “life, liberty, and justice for all,” (Declaration of Independence) I always end up naming the constitution to back up my points.

How do your friends respond to history or talking about the Constitution?
Depending on who I’m talking with, many of them actually like it. My friends and I are huge Hamilton fans so anything during that time period, if it’s in a song, it’s in our heads. Though the Constitution wasn’t directly mentioned in Hamilton, just because of the time period, they still react positively.

What do you love about U.S History and the forming of our government?
I love how unfinished it is. We’re still writing history and we still have a chance to make our mark. Also, I love how funny it is. It could be because I’m a huge Hamilton fan, but you can really see how history repeats itself.

Which U.S. historical site would you like to visit?
Funnily enough, I live in Maryland and have only been there about once. I’d love to see the MLK statue, and hopefully get to visit/see the white house! How do I live so close and have never seen it before?

Which American historical figure is most influential/inspirational to you?
Definitely Martin Luther King Jr. I love his speeches and his voice and his fight for freedom. My favorite quote to this day is, “Free at last, free at last, thank God almighty, we are free at last.”

Who is your greatest role model?
My sisters. I have two older sisters who I look up to a lot, although I’m sure they don’t know it.

What in your life are you most passionate about?
My family, I’d do anything for them.

How do you spend your free time?
Writing, reading, video editing, and learning new things.

What are your plans for the future?
I plan to become Jordan Peele famous. Not everyone knows who he is, but he’s successful enough to not have to worry about many tedious problems. I also love the group of people who do know who he is.

If you could do one super impactful thing to help people, what would it be?
This is going to sound so cheesy, but give people money. Money is literally what controls people in America and can be the difference between life and death. Almost everyone needs money, and although those who have more money than they could ever spend aren’t forced to give it
away and I won’t berate them, I still feel as though if you don’t know how you could spend it, then why don’t you just give some away? It won’t make much of a difference anyways.

Why is the Constitution relevant today?
Because though it can be “bent” depending on who it’s used against, it’s still someone that runs our country and keeps the country from falling apart. Many people use the Constitution everyday, whether it’s owning a gun, or expressing themselves.

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