Five MCPS students were recently recognized with Certificates of Accomplishment for the Princeton Prize in Race Relations. The five are:
- Ila Benson, Springbrook High School. She was one of two youth trainers to coordinate the six-week 2022 Minority Scholars Program summer internship. She spoke at the National Education Association’s Leadership Summit in March 2022, and developed a professional development program for adult educators. She has also led professional development workshops for teachers to raise awareness about student experiences with microaggressions and to encourage teachers to support students of color.
- Suhani Aryal, John F. Kennedy High School. Suhani created curriculum and helped promote the system’s first Asian American social studies course, Asian Pacific Islander Desi American Studies. She contributed to a unit on activism and resistance. She was junior class president, supported the Minority Scholars Program and participated in the countywide Student Government Association Racial Equity Summit.
- Jaiden Burney, Richard Montgomery High School. Jaiden partnered with the Richard Montgomery Student Equity Committee (RMSEC) to organize virtual town halls after the murder of George Floyd. He has since become a director and organizes events and forums on anti-racism.
- Maahe Kunvar, Northwest High School. A student advocate, Maahe’s work on the Antiracism Audit committee has contributed to the development of new Asian/African American electives, a districtwide antiracist audit and redistricting effort for 160,000 students. She is the president for two student-led, grassroots organizations, MoCo Students for Change and MoCo STEPS.
- Angelina Xu, Richard Montgomery High School. Angelina leads the Maryland Association of Student Councils, planning student-run conferences to facilitate leadership growth and statewide networking for more than 800,000 students. She also co-founded the Coalition to Re-Imagine School Waste, which empowers students in Title I schools to fight climate change through composting.
Featured photo courtesy of MCPS: Pictured left to right, Ila Benson, Suhani Aryal, Jaiden Burney and Maahe Kunvar.