Making progress

Students meet to plot next steps in Core Values Project.

Adam Loyd
December 14, 2021
Students meet to discuss core value projects

Freshly returned from Thanksgiving break, dozens of students gather in the ample space of the Bancroft Hall common room. The meeting on this Tuesday morning is part of the ongoing Core Values Project. Built into the academic schedule, these regular meetings further the community-wide, anti-oppression work done over the past year, focusing on student-led initiatives.

As the group of nearly 50 fans out around the room, some in chairs, others more comfortable on the floor, moderator and Director of Athletic Training Adam Hernandez gets the conversation started. Students in this CVP subgroup, “Windows and Mirrors: Multimedia Representations of Anti-oppression, Community Values, and Justice at PEA,” spent the fall term split into seven clusters ideating ways to spread messages of equity using various platforms.

The directive from Hernandez is for the groups to intermix and share the progress of their projects to this point in the year. Evan Gonzalez ’22 speaks on behalf of his groupmates about their hope to revive a once-popular travel opportunity for students to visit the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. 

“We want to make these trips as available as possible,” he says. “Right now, we’re hoping to secure a couple of buses for anyone who wants to sign up.”

Other students share plans to hold a fashion show, make a video or create an art installation, all with the common thread of diversity, equity and inclusion.

Similar meetings, with varying DEI themes and objectives, happen simultaneously across campus including “Talk About It,” moderated by Associate Dean of Multicultural Student Affairs Hadley Camilus and Charlie Coughlin ’22, which started as an anti-racist minicourse last school year. Other subgroups are being pitched for winter term.

Eric Zhang ’22 says he signed up for the "Windows and Mirrors" subgroup because of the freedom to get creative with how to deliver a message.

“The multimedia aspect gives you so many different outlets to reach as many people as possible,” he says. “I think that this core values project kind of gives us the opportunity to make an impact on the rest of the school.”

Students will reconvene in the new year with a push to have projects completed by the end of winter term.