Written by Magdalena Gilman, Director of College Counseling and DEI Coordinator
It has been a couple of days since MLK Day, so I have had some time to reflect on our day “on” together. LaShawn Springer, a DEI practitioner from the entertainment industry, joined us that morning and talked about the importance of thinking critically about how we viewed MLK Day.
Instead of it being a performative day of MLK quotes taken out of context, it was a day to think about history and the stories that are not told. We all have a responsibility to think about the information we consume. LaShawn implored students and staff to be a change agent and spoke about the many different ways in which to do that, whether you are a storyteller, a weaver, a disrupter, or any of the many other ways in which you can champion social justice. After our morning session, students and faculty were pushed to step outside of their comfort zone and discuss a range of topics in 21 different workshop sessions. I was extraordinarily proud of the students from the Acknowledging Discrimination class that led four of these sessions, securing the legacy of a course created by former student Autumn James ’21.
Our day ended with a powerful reflection from our students that attended the Student Diversity Leadership Conference. This was my first time orchestrating this event as New Hampton’s DEI Coordinator. I was proud of how Husky Nation came together to learn, reflect and grapple with so many different ideas and issues that face our world today. This day is but one of many where we will gather as a community to talk about equity and inclusion, both on campus and beyond these walls, and our work together is just beginning.