Common, Jennifer Hudson aim to empower Chicago youth at 'We Day Illinois'

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Thursday, April 9, 2015
Recent Academy Award-winner Common took part in St. Sabina's African American lecturer's series Friday night.

CHICAGO (WLS) -- Some of the biggest names in entertainment are coming to Chicagoland to help empower youth at the first-ever "We Day Illinois."

We Day is a worldwide movement to get more young people involved in making the world a better place.

Chicago natives Common and Jennifer Hudson, NBA legend Magic Johnson and many more hope to inspire a generational shift from "me to "we" at We Day Illinois on April 30.

"We Day is about inspiring and moving youth to become leaders - not only by spreading the word of the work they're doing, but also by encouraging them to live by taking action," Common said.

Actress and recording artist Selena Gomez will host a full day of motivational speeches and live performances. About 15,000 students and teachers are expected to attend the event at Allstate Arena in Rosemont.

Craig Kielburger, We Day co-founder, said the organization wants to light a spark and motivate them.

"We want to celebrate the good that exists in every young person, to create positive change in the world. I think so often, we see youth as almost problems to be solved. 'Keep them away from the negative. Keep them off the street.' But I think youth can do so much more," Kielburger said.

PHOTOS: Celebrities attending 'We Day' at Allstate Arena

Here's a full list of celebrities coming to town for We Day Illinois:

Common - We Day Illinois co-chair, Common Ground Foundation founder, award-winning hip hop artist

Jennifer Hudson - Grammy-winning singer, Oscar-winning actress, Julian D. King Gift Foundation co-founder

Selena Gomez - Actress, recording artist, UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, We Day Illinois co-host

Shay Mitchell - "Pretty Little Liars" star

Martin Sheen - Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actor, activist

Magic Johnson - NBA legend, two-time Hall of Famer, philanthropist

The Band Perry - Award-winning country group

Colbie Caillat - Grammy-winning pop singer, songwriter

Babyface - Grammy-winning R&B musician, singer-songwriter

Rico Rodriguez - "Modern Family" star

Raini Rodriguez - "Austin & Ally" star, singer

Hannah Simone - "New Girl" star

Lt. Colonel Eileen Collins - First female space shuttle commander, retired NASA astronaut, United States Air Force colonel

Kweku Mandela - Former President Nelson Mandela's grandson, social advocate, filmmaker

Dennis Haysbert - Film and TV actor

Marlee Matlin - Oscar-winning actress, social activist

Mustafa the Poet - 18-year-old writer, actor, emcee

Craig and Marc Kielburger - We-Day co-founders, international activists

Spence West - Me to We motivational speaker, Free the Children ambassador, author

Ashley Rose Murphy - Motivational speaker

Ezra Frech - 9-year-old athlete, motivational speaker

Ally Del Monte - Singer, blogger, activist