On Friday, April 10, the school held its annual “Celebrating Diversity” assembly, the last school assembly of the year. All students and faculty went to the large gym during periods 2A or 2B to watch multiple school clubs, ethnic groups and other collections of students put on memorable displays of their diverse backgrounds.
Clubs such as the Latin Student Union (LSU), Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA), Black Student Union (BSU) and Vietnamese Filipino Union (VFU) all participated on Friday. Performances included dances, songs, martial arts and speeches.
A few years ago, ASB decided to bring back the Diversity Assembly, “which is quickly becoming one of the more popular [school get-togethers],” ASB Vice President senior Jackie Radford said.
Some groups had to show parts of their routines and talk to Assistant Principal Dawson prior to performing in the assembly.
Students and teachers had to put in a substantial amount of time and commitment outside school to put together their routines.
“For martial arts, we’d been practicing our stuff and choreographing for about two weeks,” senior Talea Seyed said. “It was tough working on timing, finalizing our steps, getting the music cut and making sure everything looked sharp.”
LSU put on two different traditional dances, one of which is called meringue and the other which is called cumbia.
“Every lunch I had to practice with LSU on our dance, and we’d meet up on the weekends too,” senior Giovanni Jimenez said.
On the other hand, some groups started practicing much closer to the show. The Asian Rock Band, which kicked off the assembly performing “Houki, Boshi” by Younha, did not even hear about the assembly until the day of the audition according to sophomore Gary Yu.
Over 15 different groups were represented in the Celebrating Diversity assembly this year, a relatively large increase in the number of acts compared to past years’ assemblies.
GSA made a short speech about issues one has to face being gay, English teacher Michael Smith sang “Flying Without Wings,” seniors Amenta Winters and Danielle Pierre-Louis sang “Lions, Tigers and Bears” and the Beta Ladies showed off some rhythmic stepping. A collection of Persian students danced around a group of belly dancers.
Even graduates from last year partook in this year’s event, as the Mountain View Gold Star Gym Senior Hip Hop team had several ’08 alumni.
This year ASB added more to the diversity celebration than just an assembly.
Some of the performers got the opportunity to share other parts of their cultures the day before the assembly during lunch.
VFU, which danced to a traditional Filipino dance called “Tinikling” also sold traditional food during International Food Day, along with a few other clubs.
“Every group needs to be recognized and accepted…for who they are, what they stand for and what they strive to accomplish,” senior Toby The said. “The [Diversity] Assembly [was] a step in the right direction.”