Mendon and Sutherland High School students along with high school students throughout Monroe County came together for the fall 2021 ROC2Change Student Summit on Race on November 22, 2021, at St. John Fisher College, the first in-person summit since before the COVID-19 pandemic. The event was organized and led by student planning committees with students from Fairport Central School District and School Without Walls.
Sessions at ROC2Change focused on three topics: news and journalism, social media activism and debunking stereotypes in media. The keynote address was delivered by Ms. Jayda Woodall. Jayda is an undergraduate student at SUNY Oneonta who hopes to be an elementary teacher and strives to enlighten others through her spoken word poems about social injustice. She is from the Poughkeepsie area and says the lack of diversity in the schools she attended shaped her experiences. Whether it is in an elementary classroom or on social media, she uses her words, talents and knowledge to educate people.
After ROC2Change, MHS and SHS student attendees will present, share and discuss topics covered at the summit with their peers during events at both high schools. These meetings are open to all students.
ROC2Change was established in 2016 as students from across Monroe County began to come together to address race relations in the community. Hundreds of students from more than 30 schools have participated in the full-day summit in years past. These summits encourage dialogue about race through speakers, student-led activities and sessions. Each summit also includes time for students to collaborate on how to bring the ROC2Change progress and plans back to their respective schools and communities.
For more information about ROC2Change, visit: www.roc2change.com.