News at Buckley

4-Day DEI Symposia Encourages Voices on Campus

In a unique format designed to deliver this year’s Upper School Spring DEI Symposia, advisory groups met on campus to stream pre-recorded student-led sessions before engaging in conversation to answer discussion questions and provide feedback. 
This spring symposium brought students together all week to discuss the following topics: 
  • Keynote with Dr. Philip A. Woodmore: Kicking off the week of DEI symposia, Dr. Woodmore shared the opening number he wrote for the off-Broadway production of Antigone in Ferguson called “Oh Light of the Sun.” Dr. Woodmore’s keynote addressed his passion for music and the arts and his experience in finding his voice despite the injustices he’s had to face. 
  • Self Perception & its Effect on Mental Health: To break the stigma surrounding conversations on body image and negative self-perception, four student speakers shared their personal experiences with insecurity, mental health, and eating disorders. This session asked the audience to answer questions on the pressure of changing yourself to fit society’s standards. 
  • Celebrating Black Culture & a Call to Action: Presenters shared information about self-expression forms like fashion, hair, and music that are part of Black culture. This session ties the celebration of Black culture into an important discussion about systemic racism and cultural appropriation. 
  • Religion in Contemporary Society: How does religion impact the lives of those around us? To break the discomfort surrounding conversations on religion, this session led by three speakers brought in nine guests to answer questions about: religion’s impact on one’s decisions, challenges to faith brought about a materialistic society, levels of comfort towards starting conversations on religion, truths in religions, and science.  
  • Bridging the Gap in STEM: During this symposium, the Society of Women Engineers members focused on uncovering the gender gaps in STEM and education. Student Chloe W. interviewed sophomore Caitlin K., junior Katherine S., A.I. researcher from Jakarta Liesl A., and junior Archer B. to hear what they have to say about the gender gap in STEM.  
  • The Vibrations of Language: English teacher Juliet Suess and Drama and Dance Chair Neil Nash unpacked the power of language, how phonosymbolic words can impact others, and levels of language beyond dictionary definitions. The session started with a story about a man in Alabama who was worried about his health due to a curse, and it is the power of narrative that led this man to believe things about his health. 
Throughout the pre-recorded sessions, students were encouraged to pause the videos and answer discussion questions within their advisory pairings. On Friday, students participated in a synthesizing assembly and Q&A with the student presenters. 
Kudos to all of our student presenters: Avery B., Zoe B., Maddie E., Moriah E., Vivian J., Madison K., Hannah M., Khadija N., Sienna S., Maxim S.,  Ava T., Accius W., Chloe W., and Sophia W.
And big thank you to faculty presenters and DEI Symposium advisors: Ms. Abadou, Mr. Dalle, Mr. Edelen, Dr. Lucas, Mr. Nash, Mr. Neddermeyer, Mx. Suess, and Ms. Tapia.
Thank you to our keynote speaker Dr. Philip A. Woodmore! 

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