Author Sherman Alexie headlines Unity Week
By Joselin Alcantara - Staff Reporters
Noted author Sherman Alexie will be one of the speakers at the 20th Annual Unity through Diversity Week on campus from April 24-28.
Alexie, a poet, novelist, short story writer and winner of multiple awards, is being co-sponsored by Highline Public Schools Native Education Program and King County Library System. He will speak on April 27 from 7 to 8 p.m. in Building 8. Public seating is limited so vouchers are available at the Center for Leadership and Service. One voucher per person.
Admission is free and open to the public.
There will be a wide range of speakers who will touch on current topics such as race, gender, immigration, protest and youth issues during the rest of the week.
Doris Martinez, director of Student Diversity and Inclusion and Multicultural Affairs, and her committee of student leaders have been working on putting together this event since February.
Their mission is to have a week that celebrates diversity and that represents what's happening in current times and to bring forth a call to action, Martinez said.
These events will help students learn about themselves and find their own voice and will provide them and their families with resources they can take home, Martinez said.
One example will be the workshop for supporting undocumented students and their families.
Martinez said one of the highlights for this year's events will be Nikkita Oliver, an attorney, activist, and a Seattle mayoral candidate this year. She will be giving a lecture on April 24 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in Building 7 on the importance of storytelling and how it is a tool for resistance and creating movement.
Also speaking will be Jason Dorsette, the director and chief of staff at Oregon State University. He will speak on April 24 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. in Building 8 about the experiences of race and sexuality and will have a workshop where participants can share their own stories.
Anothony Ocampo, Ph.D scholar and author, will lead a workshop on how Filipino Americans have similarities with Latinos and explore whether race is really only about the color of your skin. He will be presenting April 25 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. at Building 7.
Matt Matera, along with Alejandra Perez and Larissa Garcia, will present a workshop on April 26 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. in Building 7 on supporting undocumented students and their families. Their workshop will repeat from 6:30 to 8 p.m.
Kanoe Nāone will be lead a workshop on Native Hawaiian traditional systems and how they can inspire and be of value. She will speak on April 26 from 3 to 4:30 p.m. in Building 8.
Maru Mora, a community organizer, political analyst and founder of Latino Advocacy, will lead a workshop in Spanish about the war on immigrants and what can be done. The workshop is on April 26 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in Building 7.
Comedian Ernie G. will offer empowerment through his comedy on April 27 from 10 to 11:30 a.m. in Building 7.
Fawzi Belal and Sam Alkalili will present a workshop on April 27 from 1:30 to 3 p.m. in Building 7 on ISIS, Islam and Islamophobia and how they do not represent Muslims and Islam.
Youth Undoing Institutional Racism will present a workshop on April 28 from 9 to 10:30 a.m. in Building 8 on a People's Movement: No New Youth Jail and Beyond.
The last event of the week will be a workshop on April 28 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Building 8, led by Rashad Norris who will have students work in groups to create a voice for change and understand the power behind it.
For more information about Unity Through Diversity Week, contact Multicultural Affairs at 206-592-3296.