Brittany, Senior


Photo taken by: Brittany Gause

“When I first got here in 5th grade, I was one of the only brown people in my classes. People would just stare at me as if they’d never seen a person of color. It shocked me how they would go up to me and touch my hair without asking me. Some would say hurtful things without thinking. They were unaware of what their words could do to someone. This made me insecure. I didn’t want to have thick, coily hair. I wanted it to be straight like everyone else’s. I wanted to look white.  All of these things made me feel alienated, like I couldn’t fit in, because I knew I was different. My siblings and I were all affected by this. We mentioned what was happening to our parents. We would have reflective conversations, and they would give us advice. As I transitioned into high school, clubs like KOAR (Knights Organizing Against Racism) and Black History club helped me love my skin. KOAR is important, especially with diversity in school being so scarce. I learned that other girls like me can relate, and we don’t have to feel like outsiders. Currently, KOAR is working on minority recruitment to hopefully hire more diverse teachers and add to the school environment. People of color would be able to relate to someone and feel like they can express themselves without insecurity. Looking at Black role models to emulate helped me know that my black is beautiful. Instead of feeling embarrassed about being different, we should learn to embrace our differences because if we all looked the same the world would be bland.”