New event teaches young girls about social justice
A new event created by the Women's Center invited young students to Grand Valley April 15 for a day of storytelling and discussion.
The Girls of Color Summit included 45 middle and high school students from Grand Rapids, Holland and Muskegon. The event took place in the Kirkhof Center where breakout sessions focused on topics such as feminism, leadership, self care and activism.
Shannon Cohen, Grand Valley alumna and a principal of Shannon Cohen Inc., and Veronica Beltran, Grand Valley alumna and law student at Detroit Mercy, were keynote speakers. Current students, community members and alumni served as volunteers and workshop leaders.
"The goal of this event was to create a space for girls of color to tell stories and engage in social justice," said Allison Roman, assistant director of the Women's Center. "I think students left inspired and empowered to be change agents in their communities."
Roman said the idea for a summit originated a few years ago when she heard about a similar group in California.
"It's important to provide a space for young women to engage and learn about these topics, so I was inspired to do this in a conference format for girls of color," she said.