Several candidates for Baltimore City mayor participate in a forum at Mervo High School which has been organized by students at the school. (Kim Hairston, Baltimore Sun video)
Some of Baltimore's leading mayoral candidates fielded questions Wednesday from potential constituents — many of whom can't yet vote.
City Councilmen Carl Stokes and Nick Mosby, businessman and philanthropist David Warnock, engineer Calvin Young and Green Party candidate Emanuel McCray faced off in a forum at Mergenthaler Vocational-Technical High School.
Baltimore's high-schoolers, it turns out, share some of the same concerns as the rest of the city's residents: struggling schools, unemployment and crime.
The candidates took pains to tailor their speeches to the students.
All five promised to pump more money into infrastructure to ensure all schools have adequate heating and air conditioning.
Craig Minor, 18, a Mervo junior studying criminal and civil law, moderated the hourlong event. He said he was pleased with the candidates' turnout and satisfied with their answers to the questions he and his fellow students had compiled.
"It was a great honor to have them be able to address our concerns," Minor said.
Nick McDaniels, a law and leadership teacher who helped organize the event, said it was "fantastic."
Just because they aren't all of voting age doesn't mean they aren't aware of the city's many problems, McDaniels said. He said the forum was a chance for them to voice those concerns and hear the candidates' plans to address them.
"That's really what we were hoping to get out of this," he said, "that students would feel engaged and connected."