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See all classes for Racial Justice Day!


Racial Justice Day brings South High an extensive array of workshops and classes in Justice, Identity, Culture & Art.


Racial Justice Day - May 23, 2016

Workshop Descriptions






Yoof Activism and Engagement!  

What does it mean to be an activist? This workshop centers around what it means to be a yoof activist in the Twin cities, as well as a discussion on the state of policing and criminalization here in Minneapolis. This is a discussion based workshop, will require audience participation. Come if you are interested in getting more involved with activism, or victim of police discrimination of any kind!

Leader: Yonci Jameson - Born into a family of artists, Yonci Jameson has grown up/is growing in North Mpls surrounded by blackness in the forms of Jazz, African drum and dance, poetry, storytelling and activism. Yonci has been involved in social justice activism since 2012 and has been a part of numerous organizations throughout the Twin Cities. Yonci continues to inspire and change thru engagement in the Twin cities as a queer black yoof! Location: 257 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Know Your Rights! Empower Yourself When Dealing with Police

Come to this interactive workshop to learn about the "magic words" and actions that can empower you during encounters with police.  Together, we will learn work through three scenarios to decide the best way to handle them.  We'll also talk about copwatch--a way to document police conduct and some apps you can use to keep yourself safer when dealing with police. Leaders: Michelle Gross, President of Communities United Against Police Brutality, and Andrew Henderson, Copwatch coordinator of the organization. Location: 255 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Identity Gallery Walk STUDENT LED

Students will explore how diverse and nuanced all of our identities are, and how we can connect to one another by sharing our identities and reflecting on them.  Students will be able to better understand the concept of identity, and be able to more openly think and talk about identities with others. This interactive workshop will involve creating a gallery of our identities paired with writing and sharing. Leaders: Gender Equity Location: 239 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Musical Roots and Race: And The Beat Goes On!

How do musical movements connect us beyond race? Developing Awareness, Purpose and Renewal Through Roots Music Sharing Our Inner Soundtracks, Play-list, Mix-tapes    

Leaders: Jacques Elate-Joss is a local artist and DJ in Minneapolis. He also teaches middle schoolers at Sanford. Location: Dance Room JUSTICE 1,2,3

White Allyship STUDENT LED

The workshop will include learning about our privilege and how to identify it, key do's and don't's for being a white ally, and much more! Students will participate in activities and engage in discussions to further understand our place as white people in the movement. Leaders:  Brontë Cook, Natalie El-Hai, and Chloe Spurgat. Juniors and Seniors at Mpls SW High School, in Educate Ya' self. We represented at Southwest's "race to justice day" and are excited to join students at South! Location: 250 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Comics, Zines, and Other Means of Rebellion

We are going to be discussing the way hand made media and its distribution can inform radical change in your own world. Whether it is a Zine about how to talk to the police, or a comic about how it feels to be a black woman in America, we can create impact by sharing our stories with the world. We will work as individuals and small groups to work towards better understanding each other and create impactful art.                                                            Leader: Joy Location: 252 JUSTICE 1,2

THE WORLD WE ALL WANT TO LIVE IN                                                                            

Racial justice requires fighting against racism, and it also demands a clear vision of a shared future. In this workshop, I will invite you to reflect and discuss with me the world you want to live in. I will give you paper and pens and crayons, and ask you to use words or pictures, without worrying about grammar or artistic talent, and without judging what other people write or draw. Then we will talk about what you think needs to happen so that we can all live together on Earth, the only planet that we have.                                                                              

Leader: Karin Aguilar-San Juan  My parents immigrated from the Philippines and I was born in Boston, Massachusetts in 1962. Since 1999, I have been a professor of American Studies at Macalester College where I teach about racism and racial justice. In 2015 my partner Sharon and I got married. We have two urban unemployed border collies named Bosco and Bella. Location: 252 JUSTICE 3,4

Fetishization vs. Appropriation vs. Appreciation STUDENT LED

An interactive discussion in which students explore the repercussions of taking culturally significant items and reducing them to an aesthetic in everyday cosmetics, clothing, and jewelry. Students will learn how fetishization often reinforces Eurocentric beauty standards and dehumanizes people.

Leaders: Fanta and Noura, SUSOSH members Location: 242 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Stories and Counterstories

This workshop will explore the formation of dominant narratives and how we can problematize those narratives with our stories. Students will be sharing their stories and using them as counterstories to the dominant narratives such as: students don't care about their education, if students would only try harder, and others. Leader: My name is Kleber Ortiz-Sinchi, I was born in Ecuador but migrated to the U.S. when I was 10 years old. I attended Folwell middle school and Green Central for my middle school years and graduated from Southwest High School. I received my Bachelor's in History from the University of Minnesota and Masters in Education from Augsburg College. Location: 251 JUSTICE 1,2,3,4

Why Is We Americans?

This workshop will focus on Amiri Baraka's poem Why Is We Americans and participants will be invited to discuss and write their own pieces based on the structure of Amiri's piece. In addition to Amiri's work, we will look to the Universal Declaration of Human Rights for inspiration and direction in the writing.

Leader: Desdamona is an award winning Emcee & Spoken Word artist and has toured the US & abroad performing and leading workshops in schools, prisons and community centers since the late 90's. In April, she released her latest LP entitled No Man's Land, featuring all female artists from the Twin Cities.

Location: 259 JUSTICE 1,2

Giving KASH…the Emergence of the Coffee Bean

You can be VICTIM or VICTOR! You can be PITIFUL or POWERFUL! You cannot be BOTH. You are not defined by your past. You are prepared by your past. You are powerful beyond measure. You have the opportunity to connect with the very essence of your being...... Find out HOW

Leader: Dr. Geeta Vora  Location: 252 JUSTICE 1,2,3

How Racism is both Structural and Personal (includes the Discrimination Relay simulation exercise)

Using a simulation exercise, participants experience the impacts of discrimination on a structural and personal level. During a debrief, then, we make meaning of the experiences they have had. Frequent themes that emerge include how effective the structural elements are at producing certain behaviors, how those behaviors keep us apart and keep the structures in place, what resistance looks like.

Leader: Erika Thorne  Location: 237 JUSTICE 4

Poetry, Identity, & the Beautiful Struggle

This workshop will include a brief lecture, creative writing exercise, and group discussion to focus on themes of self-identity and social justice, and how they can intersect with artistic expression.

Leader: My name is Alexei Moon Casselle, born and raised in South Minneapolis, South High alum. I have been a musician/ lyricist/ rapper for two decades, and a youth worker/ educator for half of that. I strive to blend my experience as an artist with my passion for working with young people to bring about positive change in my community. Location: 254 JUSTICE 3b, 4

Housing Discrimination

Racial Discrimination in Housing will be examined in communities in the USA, including, NY, MN even Minneapolis Leader: Richard Nohel Location: 254 JUSTICE 1,2


MIXED: the weight of Black, Indigenous, and Latinx identity

MIXED is a bare-bones, essential, community-driven dive into mixed race identity. We will cover topics such as passing, colorism in mixed communities, as well as our own (monoracial or otherwise) racial identities. Leader: Alejandro Eduarte - Hello! My name is Alejandro Eduarte. I am a mixed Latinx student of everything. I work in theatre, writing, and movements concerning issues of justice, representing love and dimensionality in community, history, and stories of POC, women, and other marginalized groups.Location: 305 IDENTITY 1,2,3,4

Youth Undoing Institutional Racism Freedom Schools

Using popular education, we will lead an interactive workshop to discuss the truth about race and racism.  We will utilize the group's experiences to gain an understanding of internalized experiences of racism under white supremacy. Leaders: Dominique Diaddigo-Cash is an anti-racist youth organizer, an international anti-militarism organizer, and a program associate in the AFSC Healing Justice program. Sara Osman is a South High alum and a leader of YUIR-Twin Cities. Vanessa Taylor is the co-founder of the Black Liberation Project, organizer with NOC, and  YUIR-Twin Cities Location: 333 IDENTITY 1,2

What is Reproductive Justice?

Students will be asked to engage in dialogue about the meaning of reproductive justice and will also create a historical timeline of reproductive justice to gain a better understanding of what it is and how it relates to the different communities of color we have in the USA, how cultures and communities have been affected by the dominant culture’s approach to sexual health and how communities of color have reclaimed reproductive rights to gain representation and liberation from these systems, we will also explore how different communities  of color experience  and view sexuality among other topic that relate to human sexuality. Leaders: Sandy Velazquez of Planned Parenthood Location: 312 IDENTITY 2,3


This workshop is specified to examine the struggles and differences of racism, by looking at race through the differences in Melanin and how that can influence someone’s experiences living in America.

Leaders: Laye Kwamina-Barry, Jada Olsen, Isak Thor Douah. Students at Mpls SW and South High School. We are Black Activists in Minneapolis, and were a part of Southwest's first "Race to Justice Day" Location: 303 IDENTITY 2,3,4

The Intersection of Adultism and Racism: Why Youth Voice is Essential                          

If you’re shocked, as a student, at how little time is given in school to talk about race, social justice, or to learn inclusive practices, sign up for this workshop!  If racism = power + prejudice, what happens when you add prejudices adults have about your choices and abilities?

Leader: Kate Towle works with educators, youth organizations, intercultural leaders and social innovators. Her consulting practice built s.t.a.r.t. (students together as allies for racial trust), birthed at South High School. Location: 337 IDENTITY 1,2,3,4

Double Tap: More than just a like STUDENT LED

A huge majority of South High students use social media. As we know, the media has a huge impact on day to day lives. In this workshop, we will be looking at how to stop and stand up to discriminating posts, comments and/or videos that reinforce racist stereotypes.

Leaders: Rebecca and Panda, SUSOSH member Location: 320 IDENTITY 1,4

We Don’t All Look Alike STUDENT LED

A half panel and half interactive discussion with south students, tackling the idea and the reality of racism with african-american/black communities. Ask and answer questions about africans, specifically, east africans and what race means to them.

Leaders: Sundus and Ahlam, SUSOSH members, with Dr. Nimo Abdi, U of M

Location: 318 IDENTITY  1,2,3,4

Hypermasculinity/Misogynoir STUDENT LED

This workshop will discuss misogyny in the black community.

Leaders: Awa, Amir, Maimouna Educate Ya Self Location: 320 IDENTITY 2,3

Perspectives on race, culture, immigration status, and multilingualism BILINGUALThis workshop will give students a chance to talk about how race, culture, immigration status, and multilingualism play a role in our identities. The workshop will be an opportunity to share our identities to build a stronger, more tolerant, more inclusive community. Somali, Spanish and English languages will be used in this workshop.

Leaders:  Osob HAssan, Carmen Gavin-Venegas, Elizabeth ReedLOCATION: 330 IDENTITY 1,2,4

Living w Disablity Americans with Disabilities Act STUDENT LED

We will explain the origin of the ADA, some (not tons) information, but mostly Q&A and examples, demonstrations and letting people try to use a wheelchair ect. Students will give narrative of their lives, give the 101 and take questions.

Leaders: Rakeb Max, Ashley Smith, Bryce Maple Location: 317 IDENTITY 1,2,3,4

Race and Capitalism

This workshop will articulate some fundamental ways racism works and how is intricately tied to capitalism, the dominant political economic system.  It is not a lecture, we will discuss many questions and learn from our experiences as well as be exposed to new ways of understanding racism in US economics and politics.

Leaders: YPAC (young peoples action coalition) Clifford Martin Location: 321 IDENTITY 1,2,3,4

"Ms. Peterson, I'm Oromo, not Somali"

Participants will learn about how we view others based on limited information. They will engage in creating a story about someone based on a single item. We will watch a video about the "Danger of a Single Story". Participants will have the opportunity of sharing out experiences of being identified a certain way based on first impressions.

Leader: Susan Peterson and former South High student Location: IDENTITY 329 1,2,3,4

B.L.A.C.K. Building Lives Acquiring Cultural Knowledge

The BLACK Kings of South, the first High School program of its kinds in MPS, will hold court and discuss the journey of Black Males through society, school and life. All are welcome to attend, black males strongly encouraged.Leader: South High Kings BLACK Class Location: 310 IDENTITY 1,2,3,4

Science for All: Increasing the Role of Minorities and Women in Science    

Why are some groups underrepresented in science and engineering?  We are all curious individuals.  In this workshop we will discuss the historical factors and barriers that have made science more accessible to privileged classes.  We will have white board discussions around some of these following topics; how does the media portray the scientist? How does perception influence personal interest in science?  How can we increase the role of minorities and women in science?   Leader: Randy Hedlund, Physics and Biology Teacher South High School Location: 311 IDENTITY 3,4


Biology of Skin Color

Is Race biological? What is the science behind skin color? Explore this question using the science of biology to learn about race.

Leader: Kate Rosok Location: 311 IDENTITY 1,2

Race and Classroom Discussions: Student Panel

This session will include conversations about the burden of teaching others, assumptions made about students of color, and other challenging dynamics. Leaders: Dr. Cynthia Lewis, U of M w/ SUSOSH member Fardous, Vivian,  Location: 333 IDENTITY 3b, 4


We will be using Beyoncé’s visual album and documentary to explore black feminism. We will watch Lemonade, and discuss questions and themes surrounding Beyoncé’s music, artistic choices, and the spoken word throughout the video.

Leader: Patty a SUSOSH leader. Location: 326A IDENTITY 1,2,3,4



Gentrification, Privatization and Racism, Oh My!

A discussion about how the housing market is racialized, and how those frameworks influence housing today. Learn about the disappearance of public and subsidized housing, what gentrification actually means, and what the roles of fair housing acts and public policy are.

Leaders: Kaaha Nasteexo is a youth organizer and artist who uses poetry to discuss systems of oppression and community organizing to try and work them out. Her vision is to help youth use art as a way to shut injustice down. Location: 232 CULTURE 2,3,4

Race In Music  

This will be an interactive workshop, with discussion, storytelling, and visualization. We will talk about how we associate music with a race, and how we perpetrate those racial stereotypes. I will also discuss how those stereotypes affect me as an artist of color.

Leader: My name is Ramone Bridges. I go to Edison High School as a full time PSEO student at MCTC. I am a paid local musician, actor, and speaker of color.Location: 206A CULTURE 1,2,3,4

White Allyship STUDENT LED

The workshop will include learning about our privilege and how to identify it, key do's and don't's for being a white ally, and much more! Students will participate in activities and engage in discussions to further understand our place as white people in the movement. The presentation will include a powerpoint presentation, small group discussions, and share outs.

Leaders: Fiona Hanley and Simon Tolma. Juniors from Mpls SW High School, members of the social justice group “Educate Ya Self.” We both enjoy filmmaking and are planning on making a documentary this summer about social justice. Location: 229 CULTURE 1,2,3,4

We Stand on the Back of Our Ancestors: Continuing the Work Towards Ethnic Studies in Robbinsdale Area Schools STUDENT LED

For the past 5 years, Robbinsdale Area Schools (RAS) students have been working towards transforming the curriculum and increasing the amount of racial diversity in the RAS district. In order to create counter stories that include people of colors contributions to society, students feel the most impactful learning experience will come in the form of ethnic studies. Students will share their experiences working towards the development of ethnic studies district-wide. Leaders: Robbinsdale Armstrong and Cooper students, attendees of the Civil Rights Research Experience (North and South), Movimiento, or American Indian Rights Research Experience. Location: 228 CULTURE 1,2

Woman First or Race First: Discussing and Discovering Intersectional Feminism

As an introduction to feminism and ideas of intersectionality, we will explore the differences between white feminism and intersectional feminism. We will discuss race and gender and their intersections, and see examples of feminism from different sources, such as music and media.                                                                                                                                 Leaders: Caroline and Natashia SUSOSH Location: 223 CULTURE 1,2,3,4

The Commitment of Race Discussions

A collection of articles, blogs, and videos leading to a mix of small and large group discussion about the difficulties of talking about race, how we can break down our walls, and the effects of falling through on commitments.

Leader: Alex Polk Location: 204 CULTURE 1,2,3,4

A New Perspective on Black Culture STUDENT LED

A discussion revolving around the question, “why is the black male a threat to society?” Breaking down the question, where it comes from, and why we ask it. This workshop is all about breaking down stereotypes about Black communities, and understanding the origins of the system in place that affect them.

Leader: Tariq Muata, SUSOSH Member, Junior at South Location: 227 CULTURE 1,2,3,4

Identifying the Four Levels of Racism and Education Equity Tools

Participants will be introduced to the Four Levels of racism. Breakout into small groups to unpack the racist scenario and receive information on how to intervene. The workshop participants will receive a briefing on the Pathway to Education Equity Tool.

Leader: Julia Freeman, Voices for Racial Justice Location: 230 Culture 2

Negotiating Mixed Identity

People of mixed and multiracial heritage may face specific challenges in negotiating their racial identity: Internal and external pressures to identify as monoracial, the feeling of not belonging among different parts of their identities, and racism and microaggressions within family and community can contribute to the complexity of this identity. Small group activities will offer the opportunity for participants to process their own journey through negotiating racial identity and how current events and social justice movements have impacted identity. All who connect with the neither/both experience are welcome!

Leader: Lola Osunkoya, neitherboth llc Location: 222 CULTURE 1,2,3,4

Parks and Power: Building a local Racial Justice Power Base

Come learn about our active organizing campaign working to turn the Minneapolis Park Board into a model for Racial Justice in local government. The Park Board is the largest property holder in the city and is an independent branch of local government, 8 of 9 elected Park Board Commissioners are White, all 9 seats will be up for grabs in the 2017 city elections. We are currently immersed in the struggle to restore the name Bde Maka Ska to “Lake Calhoun”, and working on the 20 year master plan for park programming, we want to hear your ideas.

Leader: Jake Virden, Chaka Mlali, David Gilbert-Pederson Location: 221 CULTURE 2

Deconstructing Stereotypes: Iron Cages

Utilizing mixed delivery methods, including participatory exercises, discussions, and audio/video presentations, the sessions strives to bring awareness the process of stereotyping.  We will explore assumed competencies, epistemic violence, social construction, and how to avoid and disrupt the behavior of stereotyping.  

Leader: Dr. Jay M. Williams is a scholar of ethnic identity development. He  teaches Anthropology and Sociology at Minneapolis Community & Technical College  Location: 235 CULTURE 2,3

Internalized and Institutionalized Racism  STUDENT LED

The goal of this workshop is to make everyone comfortable enough to talk about and have a discussion about race in general, but more specifically, educate and be able to discuss what institutionalized racism is, because only after we are educated then can we target the issue and try to eliminate it. Anyone attending this workshop is contributing to the being the change they want to be. You will be interacting in discussions, step-ins, and a game called inferior-superior. Students will also be analyzing song lyrics with institutionalized racism in mind.

Leaders: SUSOSH members Aishah & Mahamed Location: 221 CULTURE 1,3,4

East African Panel STUDENT LED

Do you have questions about East African cultures but are scared to ask? Do you want to learn more but are uncertain how and where to start.. This session has Information about different East AFrican cultures, history and geography and just might provide you the answer as to why Drake loves East AFricans so much.

Leader: Sofia Mohamed, Hamdi , Ifrah Jibril Location: 206b CULTURE 1,2,3,4

There are other Worlds (Double Workshops 3 and 4)

Theater Performance and Q&A to follow. This work tells Amri Akenyemi , a mother and Black activist, and her journey healing broken relationships with her teenage daughters. The second workshop will focus on creative writing and its role in activism.

Leader: Junaude Petrus Location: Black Box CULTURE 3,4

What do we mean by Freedom?

The goal of this workshop is to build an understanding on how the word Freedom lives in the American social system by comparing the similarities and differences to how freedom lives in our own lives. I will also be plugging the history of rebellion in spoken word and hip-hop culture.

Leader: Keno Evol Location: 228 CULTURE 3,4

Story Circles

The importance of our stories and untold narratives. Our stories are who we are. In order to understand each other, we must hear each other's stories. This is an interactive workshop that involves moving around and sharing in small groups, then the larger group.

Leaders: Mary Manor and Michelle Ockman Location: 219 Culture 1,2,3,4

Anti-Semitism and Genocide

An overview of Anti-Semitism and Genocide  in the Modern World.

Leaders:Maia Roberts, Izzy Roumaniere, Ray Johnson Jensen Location: 224 CULTURE 1,2


Freedom Summer 64’

Down in Mississippi is my play about the young student volunteers and activists who went down to the dangerous world of Mississippi in 1964 to register Mississippi Negroes to vote.  Their actions and their sacrifices led to the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voting Rights Act of 1965.   I will read 3 monologues from the play and facilitate a discussion about the role of personal choice and self-awareness in political activism.                                                                          

Leader: Carlyle Brown is a writer/performer and artistic director and recipient of numerous awards including 2006 Black Theatre Network’s Winona Lee Fletcher Award for outstanding achievement and artistic excellence. Location: 119 ART 1,2,3,4

Environmental Justice Storytelling STUDENT LED

How are race and socioeconomic status related to issues of the environment? Do images of nature pop into your head when you think of “climate change,” or do you think of health impacts, food justice, or something else?Join us in a workshop to craft your story about environmental justice and listen to others’ experiences.

Leaders: Addie Welch and Isabel Strebe of Green Tigers. Location: 126 ART 1,2,3,4

The Power of Art in Immigration (led in spanish and english)

What brings immigrants from every walk of life together? Immigrant with different countries, cultures? Art; art expands everywhere and it can be understood even without speaking the language. We (immigrants) are able to feel, observe and create freely. I was born in Peru and I immigrated to Mexico City at the age of 9 and then to the US as an adult. Now I look back at my roots and i just want to see the best of me. My art is a display of my frustrations of exile and immigration. In this workshop we will talk about how art has been a tool to deal with and understand my own tail of immigration.

Leader: Charlie Mendez Areu Location: 120 ART 1,2,3,4

Auditorium Documentaries, including Cracking the Code: The System of Inequity

Cracking the Codes: The System of Racial Inequity is a documentary features moving stories from racial justice leaders including Amer Ahmed, Michael Benitez, Barbie-Danielle DeCarlo, Joy DeGruy, Ericka Huggins, Humaira Jackson, Yuko Kodama, Peggy McIntosh, Rinku Sen, Tilman Smith and Tim Wise.

Leaders: SUSOSH members Antoine and Antonio Location: AUDITORIUM ART 1,2,3,4

West Great Lakes Lacrosse

All Nations will offer a West Great Lakes traditional lacrosse informational session. We will describe the history and value of this game to participants and we will show students the basics of the game, and hopefully play

Leader: David Butler Location: 134B ART 1,2,3

The Forgiveness Project

Transforming lives through the power of personal narrative and story. The goal of the workshop is to use narrative to address difficult topics and arrive at reconciliation. There will be an emphasis on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Leaders: Louisa Hext, The Forgiveness Project Location: 125 ART 2,3,4

“Don’t you think we care?” Staff-Student Conversations STUDENT LED

We are making sure students don't get shut down. We want to let them speak out, making sure we're not just students, but equals in conversation with teachers and staff. Show that you want things to change about teachers and their actions. Come have a real talk with a teacher. Let’s make this connection real.

Leaders: SUSOSH members Roodo Abdi and Sagal Mohamed Location: 128 ART 1,2,,3

Teachers Learn Too: An Interactive Lesson on Systemic Oppression In Your Classroom

A student led presentation, and discussion based workshop for students and teachers to establish basic knowledge of segregation in Minneapolis, how that affected MPS, and to create dialogue around teachers and students working together to fight racism at their school. All school wide staff are encouraged to attend, and the workshop will have small group discussions concurrent to a slide show presentation, student and teacher share outs, and a student panel.

Leaders: Collin Robinson,  Sophomore at Minneapolis Southwest High School. Member of the NAACP Education Committee, Twin Cities Coalition for Justice for Jamar, Educate Ya' Self, and Dare 2 Be Real SWHS, CityWide Student body President of Minneapolis. Amir Sharif is a Junior at Minneapolis Southwest, activist in Educate Ya' self and Dare 2 Be Real SWHS member.

Location: BAND ROOM 1,2,3,4