My Private Boarding High School Essay

My Private Boarding High School Essay

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I spent four years of my life in rural Plymouth, NH, surrounded by trees, wildlife, and white people. My private boarding high school was a drastic change from growing up in the Bronx, NY. It was quiet. At times the silence was peaceful but it was also a reminder that I was far from home. There wasn’t any public transportation; people had to use cars to travel. At night, the sky lit up with hundreds of beautiful bright stars; a rare sight in the city. Almost every faculty member that lived on campus either had a new born baby, dog or both. The majority of the faculty was white heterosexual males though there were women as well, but none of which were of color. In my four years attending Holderness, there were only two faculty members of color, two men, one from Zimbabwe and another from Harlem. My freshmen year there was ten students of color out of 300-400 white students. As the years went on the ratio of colored students decreased to seven and then five. All of us students of color were friends and typically stuck together in most scenarios.
There wasn’t an equal racial representation of students on the weekend activity board. The weekend activities usually consisted of hiking, making smores, camping trips and archery, activities that weren’t of interest to us. Our school and neighboring schools frequently threw parties that we attended but the music wasn’t diverse either. We were forced to dance to songs that we wouldn’t dance to at parties of our choice. There was a diversity club on campus that consisted of the students of color and a few white students who cared to an extent about the inequalities on campus.
It was easier for the guys to assimilate into the white community versus the girls. In many instances we were divide...

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... that I stood up for myself whether it was a small prejudice comment or a big racial issue on campus. My friends and I were chastised by many of our white peers and even faculty for being vocal on racial issues. Although, it was hard to speak against racism, I knew that if I didn’t do it the chance that someone else would was slim to none. There was a lack of support from the faculty to address racial issues and that frightened black students to be silent for years. I strove to bring about change even if that meant only changing one white student or gaining the support of one more faculty member. I always knew that racism existed, but it wasn’t until high school that I actually experienced it for myself. It wasn’t until I was in an environment where I was a minority that I understood the hindering impact racism could have on a person’s mental and emotional stability.

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