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Mid-Pen attends Student Diversity Leadership Conference

Student Leadership Conferene

Mid-Pen sent 4 students and two faculty members to attend the NAIS 30th People of Color Conference (PoCC) and the 24th Student Diversity Leadership Conference (SDLC) in Anaheim, California.

Julia Longnecker (Biology teacher), Andrea Henderson (Registrar and Diversity Director), and our students spent an amazing 5 days together participating in workshops and attending keynote sessions that featured nationally prominent speakers. Alynna Vilchez ’19 and Ryan Burton ’18 have attended the PoCC previously, so they took on a leadership role with our students who were attending the conference for the first time, Keaton Berkes ‘19, and Naomi Orta ’19.    

One of the keynote speakers at the conference was Kimberlé Crenshaw, a full professor at the UCLA School of Law and Columbia Law School. Kimberlé specializes in race and gender issues and is especially known for introducing intersectional theory, which is the study of how intersecting minority identities relate to systems and structures of oppression, domination, and discrimination. Another keynote speaker, was Ta-Nehisi Coates, a national correspondent for the Atlantic. Ta-Nehisi is the author of a New York Times Bestseller, Between the World and Me, which recently earned a National Book Award.

The students spent their very long days workshopping with students from all around the country – 1,600 fellow students to be exact! This was the biggest PoCC and SDLC conference in NAIS history, with over 6,000 attendees. It was truly an experience of a lifetime!  

After the long conference days, our Mid-Pen crew was able to spend some time late Saturday afternoon and evening at Disneyland and Disney California Adventure. Watching the firework show Saturday night was the perfect ending to an amazing trip. Most importantly, our student attendees return to Mid-Pen with new knowledge and insight that they will be sharing with our entire Mid-Pen community. We will be an even better school because of all their thoughtful work at this conference.