Mica Baum-Tucillo

Position: (she/they)

My name is Mica Baum-Tuccillo. I am a licensed social worker, educator, researcher, and a facilitator with YoutNPower. Over the last decade plus, I have helped build several research collectives, which have used eclectic methods to organize around urgent concerns of justice and produce knowledge collaboratively and with joy. I have an MSW from Hunter College, where I focused on trauma-informed psychodynamic therapy and research with LGBTQ+ people, and a Masters of Philosophy in Psychology from the Graduate Center, where I am a doctoral candidate and a Mellon Humanities PublicsLab Fellow. When not researching or facilitating, I am usually cooking, playing music, camping, gathering with friends & family, or running/biking.

Why is this project important to you?
Because we are not interested in tinkering with the systems that maintain violence and the status quo, but in building a radically more just, caring, and sustainable world. Because this project centers young people’s wisdom, expertise, analysis and leadership. Because the questions we ask matter, and data never speak for themselves.

What do you hope to accomplish in this project?
I believe that critical collaborative inquiry can lead to collective liberation. This is always what I’m hoping for. Beyond that, I hope that we provide meaningful support to young people who are aging out of care, that young people find our work compelling and choose to add their expertise, and that we can make a case for a youth-led agenda that challenges systemic violence and oppression, and includes unsurveilled and unconditional financial support.

What have been some of your experiences in the project?
I am inspired by how our collective is weaving rigorous research with organizing for relational and political justice. The creativity, wisdom, and vulnerability that each person has brought to our work is magnificent. Whether we are designing a survey, power mapping, conducting interviews, analyzing data, storytelling, designing self/community care strategies, we are deliberate about participation, we take the time required to build trust, we support each other’s leadership, and we center care and dignity. Plus, I love getting to be one of the meeting DJs on our zooms!

What are your hopes and dreams for young people?
I hope that young people demand to have power in decision-making processes in all aspects of their lives. My dream for young people — and really for all of us — is that we find beautiful, intergenerational communities and movements where we are loved, where we can heal, where we are powerful, and where we feel at home.

Mica’s Favorite Things:
Author: octavia butler
Colors: turquoise, purple
Flowers: tiger lilies, lavender
Hobbies: cooking, camping, traveling, music festivals, playing music, reading, writing poetry
Food: anything that tastes like home
Beverages: espresso macchiato, mint tea, WATER!
Movie genres: sci-fi thrillers
Zodiac: gemini sun, capricorn moon, cancer rising