By Kami Rieck
Students striving to make a difference in society don’t need to go any farther than the classroom. The Students for Social Change, a new group that was created this year, is dedicated to changing the social climate of not only Concordia, but also the rest of society.
Five seniors helped make this group possible after they felt “much racial tension” in the hallways.
“The mission of the whole club is to educate people because at school I feel like we are only exposed to opinions of our teachers or pastors. It’s good for the students to have a safe place to go to learn about different views and cultures. We have people in our group that are pro-life and pro-choice, and we can all sit down and have a conversation where we all feel like our opinions are valued,” senior leader Tayanna Rollins explained.
Meetings are held biweekly on Tuesday mornings under the supervision of two teachers to discuss different topics. They have even had two survivors of the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church massacre, Polly Sheppard and Felicia Sanders, come and share their stories.
“It was really touching and inspiring to hear them talk. They have so much strength and faith in God, which was just to amazing to hear after everything they’ve been through,” reflects Kayla Williams.
The group has approximately 15-20 active members, and all students are welcome to join. Outside of meetings, the group engages in community service projects and field trips that they hope will enhance their understanding on different cultures, social issues and discrimination that people still face today.
Another activity that leader Kaia Woods conducted was a trip to the Charles H Wright Museum of National History. The primary objective of this experience was for the group to become more enlightened of history in honor of Black History month.
“There is a lot of stuff that we never learned in history class that I learned in that one day. My favorite part of the whole thing was how positive it was. I love how they emphasized how we were royalty before we were treated like animals. No matter what our people went through, there has always been hope at the end, and that’s something that I have definitely taken with me,” describes junior Sa’Mya Jordan.
The group aims to stay active and continue to elect passionate leaders throughout the coming years at Concordia.
“By helping create and being the vice president of this group, is has impacted my life so much. It is a good feeling to know that I am educating people about the many problems of this world and spreading awareness on hidden issues. Students for Social Change is my part in giving back to the community,” Senior leader Imani McGill elaborates.