December 08, 2022

All Together Now

How today’s students are shaping a welcoming and equitable Big Blue community

Across classrooms, programs, and more than 130 clubs and affinity groups, today’s students are taking the lead in shaping a welcoming and equitable Big Blue community. With support from Knowledge & Goodness donors, the Academy continues to empower students as they foster a culture of belonging. Below are some highlights:

1. PEER LISTENERS

In this initiative led by the Dean of Students Office and the Sykes Wellness Center, participating students—11 uppers joined this fall—commit to a two-year term as wellness mentors. Through one-on-one student meetings, dorm talks, and drop-in sessions, these fully certified Peer Listeners form an empathetic support system to help address a range of common student challenges.

2. CAMD POWER PLAYERS AND CAMD SCHOLARS

For 34 years, students have partnered with the Office of Community and Multicultural Development (CAMD) to foster inclusion at Andover. CAMD’s Power Players work to disrupt implicit bias and build awareness of race, class, sexual orientation, gender, and disability. In addition, this year’s four CAMD Scholars are examining myriad social justice issues and presenting their findings throughout the year.

3. BRACE STUDENT FELLOWS

At PA’s Brace Center for Gender Studies—the only one of its kind at the secondary-school level—students learn how to advocate for gender-based inclusion and social change across multiple platforms. In particular, Brace Fellows dive deep into the academic field of gender and sexuality. Specific topics this fall include critiques of scientific research into theorized causes of gender identity and scholarly exploration of a “third gender” in Mexico.

4. YES+ EDUCATORS

Uppers and seniors involved in YES+ (Youth Educators for Sex Positivity) are informing their peers on all aspects of sexuality, thereby reducing any stigma of shame and fear. Students in this program—a collaboration with the Dean of Students Office and the Brace Center—provide content about consent, sexual health, media literacy, and intersectionality.

5. SPIRITUAL PARTNERS

Guided by the Andover Chaplaincy, students can nourish their faith journeys by participating in—and leading—clubs that encourage their spiritual, emotional, and ethical development. These groups are open to all and include Andover Christian Fellowship; Catholic Student Fellowship; Culture, Philosophy, and Religion; Jewish Student Union; and Muslim Student Union.

Originally printed in The Vista: Views from the Knowledge & Goodness Campaign, fall 2022.

Categories: Campaign News

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