Sea Kings Unite for Diversity

Chloe Lendi, Writer

Students and faculty participate in the Day of Silence Unity Circle in Sea King Park. Photo by Phoebe Lai

The multicultural food fair, where the Spanish Honors Society, French Honors Society, and Chinese Honors Society gathered to serve burritos with agua fresca, crepes with nutella and strawberries, and orange chicken with rice, were one of the culture uniting events part of diversity week. Hosted by the Be the Change [BTC] program, diversity week is a week long celebration of different cultures, the special education program, and LGBTQ rights on campus. 

Senior Alaina Bucy, one of the BTC vice presidents, reflected on what diversity truly means and why it is important to celebrate it, especially in schools. 

“Diversity [to me] is when many different people from different backgrounds that have a different race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, come together to be kind and respect one another,” Bucy said. 

“We need to recognize each other’s differences and embrace them. At our school we usually stay inside of our little cliques and don’t really branch out to meet new people who are different from us, and I believe diversity weeks helps us meet new people.” 

BTC put in a lot of effort to make this week inclusive and fun to get all students to participate by hosting a variety of games and events.

Junior Ryan Ammann elaborated on the events scheduled for the week. 

“Monday we had Ryan Pascal speak about how you can get involved in student activism and how to find your voice. Tuesday we made bracelets where every color of string represented something about yourself. We also had a map where you could pin your nationality,” Ammann said. 

“The multicultural food fair was held on Wednesday at lunch, and the next day we had the challenger basketball game where the special needs kids played in the gym. Finally, on Friday GSA hosted the day of silence.”

The challenger basketball game is among one of the most popular days, as the entire school, along with the cheer team and Red Tide, came down to the gym to root for the special education class while they shot basketballs in the hoops. 

Senior Kelly Hoyt witnessed the game this year and thought it was amazing how the students bonded with the special education program. 

“Some students are intimidated by people with special needs, so it is so cool when we bring everyone together and everyone can have fun and create new friendships,” Hoyt said. 

Sophomore Jingdi Tan participated in the game last year and could not wait for their upcoming game. 

“I practiced for four days for two hours. I am very excited, but not nervous,” said Tan.

Along with Tan, Senior Jillian Frankel  had a great experience last year and is very excited for this year’s event. 

“I also practiced this weekend a little bit. It was super fun last year…  I am excited but a little nervous,” Frankel said. 

Along with culture and inclusion, diversity week touched upon an issue concerning of the LGBTQ community. 

Organized by GSA, the Gay-Straight Alliance on campus, the Day of Silence is an annual day of action to spread awareness about the effects of the bullying and harassment of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning students. 

Junior Seven Smith-Mercer, a GSA board member, explained why it is vital to participate in this event. 

“The Day of the Silence is important to me because it is a day to speak for those who didn’t speak for themselves and don’t have to chance to voice how they feel and who they are, because they lose their lives to [bullying],” Smith-Mercer said. 

“Day of Silence is not about hiding, it’s about showing other people with our silence that we are here for you, we support you, and you have a group of people who care for you.”