By Jordan Murray ’20 and Skylar Graham ’20
Yara Shahidi, who plays the character Zoey on the TV show “Black-ish,” spoke at an all-school assembly on Feb. 6 at the Middle School. The show is about an upper-middle class black family in the U.S. who discusses many topics involving race and culture. During the assembly, Shahidi shared her personal experiences about being in school and getting involved in the community.
“This is really about sharing my personal experience, and if it can help in any way shape or form, then that is the goal because I know my experience is personal to who I am. At the same time I feel like we go through so many similar things just especially as teenagers and with young women of color,” Shahidi said.
Another prominent topic during the assembly was the importance of and reasons why people should celebrate Black History Month.
“Black History Month is extremely important to me because one, Black History is often times excluded from history, and it was eye opening going to the Smithsonian for African American History and seeing how much is left out,” Shahidi said
After the assembly Shahidi spoke with the students in the school’s Black Leadership Awareness and Culture Club. The students had the opportunity to ask Shahidi questions about her career, her interests in Black History and her advocacy for women and minorities.
Shahidi also spoke about the importance of being part of a community that allows people to express their opinions about the world and how it affects them. According to the students, she was very thoughtful and shared relatable experiences of being a student and juggling her acting career.
“I admired the way [Shahidi] spoke so clearly and the way each word that came out of her mouth shouted out confidence in what she believes in,” Lauren Mc Gee ‘20 said.