Redefining Teen Idol: Nick Jonas
Gone are the days of teen-age heart throbs who simply sing a little, look good and make girls scream. No, the new brand of Tiger Beat guy is all about making a difference in the world. (We can’t help it if he also happens to be easy on the eye.) In between the demanding schedule of being the youngest Jonas Brother, starring on the TV show JONAS and fronting his own band Nick Jonas and the Administration, the musician/actor/singer-songwriter advocates on behalf of several causes.
Most recently, Jonas has taken up the noble task to Save the Music. The nonprofit, now in its 13th year, works to restore and implement musical education in American public schools. As the spokesperson for the Battle of the Bands campaign, a partnership with DoSomething.org, Jonas is calling on kids across the US to submit videos of garage band, glee club, freestyle, orchestra, or any other musical performance to be reviewed by an panel of experts and celebrity judges. In addition fun prizes like Fender guitars and Rock Band video games, five winners will get $1000 to go toward their school’s music programs and the grand prize winner will get $5000.
While music education seems like an obvious thing for a multi-talented performer to support, Jonas’ other passion gets even more personal. Nick went through a difficult time coming to terms with a type 1 diabetes diagnosis at age 13. Like many other powerful change-makers, Jonas decided to share his experience and struggles to help others. Last August, he testified before Congress about the need for research funding to find a cure. Because living with diabetes requires so much daily maintenance — a particular burden for kids — the 17-year-old teamed up with Bayer to create Nick’s Simple Wins.
The website provides a forum for Jonas to share tips on how he not only copes with diabetes, but how he also continues to live life to its fullest.
Brothers, Joe and Kevin, joined the fight against diabetes and the trio formed Change for the Children Foundation, which “supports programs that motivate and inspire children to face adversity with confidence, determination and a will to succeed.” They believe the most effective help for kids often comes from their peers. In that spirit, Nick created Dog Tags — some have medical emergency symbols and others are just a way to show support. All proceeds go to support the foundation.
And, on April 18 Nick and his brothers will be honored by T.J. Martell Foundation, where they will also perform live. Now, if all that’s not something to scream about girls, we don’t know what is.