Students describe MLK Day speaker as ‘inspiring’ and ‘enlightening’
About 250 students and 25 teachers and administrators packed the Quakertown Community High School cafeteria Monday morning and heard from a dynamic speaker before heading out to various parts of Bucks County and the Lehigh Valley to serve their fellow citizens.
The district’s second Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service was a wonderful moment for those seeking to make a positive experience on others. And it began with a one-hour presentation by Dr. Veirdre Jackson, an award-winning author, educator, and entrepreneur who is recognized as a leading educational trainer in trauma-informed practices and cultural competence.
“When a school district allows young people to take leadership, the students believe they can have an impact and begin to think about who they can be impacting,” said Dr. Jackson, the CEO/Founder of Living Strong Consulting LLC and the Co-Founder of Fresh Fountain of Life Counseling and Wellness. “These young people are invested in the process and they are empowered. Results can happen in a peer to peer connection. Young people have the power to influence.”
Dr. Jackson said interactions between people can be powerful with life-altering consequences, adding that “while we are products of our past, we don’t have to be prisoners to it.” She urged students not to be silent or apathetic if they see something wrong, and often spoke of Dr. King’s message and of the importance of being “authentic, empathetic spirits.”
Students said they felt the impact of Dr. Jackson’s words.
“She was so inspiring. Everything she said related to my life,” said Angelina Becker. “I will take this with me when I step outside of school and it will stick with me.”
Riya Sembhi said she “loved” Dr. Jackson’s presentation. “She made me more aware of the different classes and social structure. This was enlightening.”