Wednesday, May 1 was the first Social Awareness Day at Mineral Point High School, as organized by the Student Government. Key student leaders for this day included: Kevin Eisenzimmer, Maddie Faull, Zoe Hay, McKenna Reichling, Cole Wilson, and Adviser Kristin Staver.

Instead of classes, students and staff spent the day with guest speakers who came from near and far to share their expertise on various issues.

Guest speakers were:

  • Catherine Bosley, TV Journalist, speaking on Social Media Responsibility
  • Tony DelaRosa, Editor at Harvard Asian American Policy Review, speaking on Racial Sensitivity
  • Paula Schoenberg, UW-Platteville Sexual Violence Victim’s Advocate, speaking on Sexual Harassment and Assault Awareness
  • Sandra Scott, Judith Sutcliffe, Maggie Tucker, and Lowry Wright, MP residents, speaking on Gender/Sexuality Sensitivity
  • Kyle Van Haren, Detective at UW-Madison Police Department, speaking on Consequences of Social Media
  • Megan Wolf, Therapist at WKM Psychology, speaking on Mental Health

Positive comments from students and staff included:

“I wasn’t sure what to expect when I walked in the doors that morning. The speakers were powerful and they spoke from personal hardship, not simply just reading from a paper. They were interactive and made everyone feel welcome. The most important thing I learned is that I can have more of an open mind than I ever thought possible. This day will affect the rest of my life.”

“Listen to your inner voice. Remember, a fun moment in time can ‘forever’ change your future.”

“I will now me more than careful when I go to post something online or comment on another’s picture because just one mistake could ruin my whole life.”

“I loved yesterday. It showed me to appreciate what I have and not take anything for granted. I learned to never give up on myself because I’m a survivor and people care for me.”

“It gave me a visual on how privileged we actually are. We need to be thankful for what we have, as some people don’t have the necessities to live a healthy and effective life.”

“Yesterday’s guest speakers gave me knowledge that I would have never even considered. Having them come from various areas across the nation to address stigmatized issues faced commonly in society truly broadened my perspective of respect and understanding.”

“The MPHS Social Awareness Day changed my perspective about what you should and should not post on social media. Just wearing a #PointerNation shirt can tell someone where you live.”

“What I took from yesterday was that you first have to believe in yourself in order to stand up for what you believe in.”

“‘Great things never come from comfort zones.’ This quote was the basis of the Mineral Point High School Social Awareness Day. As a student, the last thing I wanted to do during this day was to sit for six hours and listen to people lecture me about things I’ve heard plenty of times before. I was always told, ‘Don’t do this and don’t do that. You’re just a teenager who needs to be taught lessons about life. Just sit back and listen to us adults.’ I always obeyed to the norm and never thought I had my own opportunity to speak for myself. I always stayed quiet about issues that not only affect me now, but will continue to affect me for the rest of my life. That was until I took myself off of auto-pilot. I decided to speak up for what’s right, to have my own voice, and to appreciate the privileges I have on a daily basis. Not everyone is privileged to be educated at the Mineral Point School District and experience what I do here. It is because of this school that I am now self-aware about situations that will forever and always have an impact on me.”