“Remember to turn of those lights when you leave the room.”

“Can you turn off the air conditioning? The windows are open and you’re wasting energy.”

“I know hygiene is important to you, but honestly, hour-long showers are really NOT necessary.”

These are just a few examples of the comments with which I pester my friends on a daily basis.

Apparently, nagging pays off, because a month ago I was able to convince three of my friends from Northampton High School to go with me to the Cambridge Commons Leadership Campaign sleepout. As high schoolers, we were initially nervous and wary of the big, scary college kids who seemingly dominated the Leadership Campaign. Our fears were soon assuaged when we arrived to the commons with our tents (and a bag of sleepout equipment so reminiscent of a dead body it would put a serial killer to shame) in hand: we were met with nothing but excitement and enthusiasm from everyone we talked to.

It was then that I realized that high schoolers are welcomed and, in fact, needed to keep the energy of the Leadership Campaign going, especially over the summer. Thankfully, the Campaign now has a strong base of high schoolers who can keep that energy going. This holds increasingly true; at the Boston Commons sleepout this past Wednesday, I saw the amount of Western Mass high schoolers double. The campaign is growing before my eyes, and it’s exciting to be a part of a political movement with an increasing number of followers each day. And I understand the attraction: who wouldn’t want to be part of an organization that encourages you to camp in the middle of a city with hundreds of other people, push climate legislation, and have a great time doing it?!

Thank you, Leadership Campaign, for making my nagging worth it.