Meet Joy

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My name is Alicia McDowell, but I often go by my middle name, Joy.

I am new to Tampa, having been here since May 2016. I moved here right after graduating from the University of National Champions…er, I mean the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Go Tar Heels!).

What isn’t new, however, is my dedication to youth. I have been volunteering, mentoring, and tutoring youth since my freshman year of college through programs including Upward Bound and Habitat for Humanity. I currently serve as the Unaccompanied Youth Liaison for my full-time job with the Tampa Hillsborough Homeless Initiative. I plan to study Education Policy for graduate school, for which I just finished submitting applications.

In anticipation for the upcoming movie, Marvel’s Black Panther, I noticed many people talking about buying out theaters for all-black screenings. I loved the idea, but as a youth advocate, I wanted to make sure that youth had the opportunity to experience this too! What started as buying out a small theater at AMC Veterans turned into 3 theaters with 3 different screenings. I’m really excited to pull off this experience for you. I also thank everyone who has reached out to help!

If you would like to sponsor, please reach out using my personal email – and I will reach out shortly. You can also navigate up to the “Donate” tab. Any donation is really appreciated and will ONLY go towards the tickets or concessions for the Black Panther screening. Any excess funds will go towards one of the youth groups that participate.

Feel free to find me on LinkedIn and Facebook !