For a second year, Penn Charter students planned and led the Cheryl Irving Student Diversity Conference for high school students from across the region, including Inter-Ac schools, Crefeld School, Mount Saint Joseph School, and fellow Quaker schools Moorestown Friends and Friends Central.
This year’s workshops and discussions centered on intersectionality, the theoretical
framework for understanding how different categorizations of race, gender, class or
ability might combine to uniquely impact an individual’s experience of discrimination
“I wanted to make sure that the day provided a space where students would explore diversity through the lens of intersectionality and in doing so honor the conference's namesake, Ms. Cheryl Irving,” said Savannah Payton, who led the monthslong, 16-student effort to organize the conference. “The most fulfilling part of my role was watching the day unfold as co-organizers and attending students engaged in meaningful activities facilitated by their peers, made connections and had fun."
Workshops led by students included Free Speech in Songs, Disability Etiquette,
Environmental Racism and more. The conference welcomed Kevin Powell, acclaimed civil and human rights activist, to campus as the keynote speaker. Powell is the author of 13 books, including his autobiography, The Education of Kevin Powell: A Boy’s Journey into Manhood. On the eve of the conference, Powell spoke to parents and signed books.
The conference was named in memory of beloved Penn Charter English teacher Cheryl O. Irving Hon. 1689.