Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee Review: New Events, More

Vishesh Ranganathan, News Writer

Pinewood strives to be as inclusive as possible, which comes through many different forms. For instance, our very own faculty Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee tackles many problems regarding this issue. Recently, the DEI committee announced the cultural events that are to take place on campus, such as the Lunar New Year celebration, which will result in the further acceptance of the various cultures in our community.

“Embracing all of the cultures on campus is just part of the process of ensuring all of our students feel seen and heard,” said Olivia Bradley, D.E.I. committee member and Spanish teacher. “[We] continue to create opportunities for Pinewood to host these special celebrations like the Lunar New Year celebration on January 28.”

Assistant Head of Upper Campus and DEI committee member Haley Hemm dove deeper into the reasoning for events such as International Week, where cultures from all around were represented through the various tables which gave a taste of each culture. 

“We want to make sure that all of our students have their physiological needs met, all students feel safe, all students feel belonging and loved,” Hemm said.

Committee member and chemistry teacher Sarah Prestwood shares similar beliefs. She believes embracing cultures goes further than the celebration itself.

“We are making efforts through celebrating specific holidays and inviting families to host tables . . .” Prestwood said. “[We are] teaching the community about a facet of their culture.”

The committee seems to be thoroughly acting on their beliefs, as seen by the following.

[We] look forward to seeing our appreciation for other cultures and traditions strengthen the ties we have as a community,” Bradley said.

What Bradley along with the rest of the D.E.I committee members agree with, is that through these various events, we as a community are tasked with fostering a sense of belonging for the different cultures at Pinewood. Making everyone feel appreciated in our community is not just the committee’s goal, but also ours, as proud Pinewoodians.

I feel that sometimes students [do] not realize how diverse our population on campus is, and so it was important that we create an opportunity for students, faculty and families to share their culture and make connections with each other,” Bradley said.