• Listen to Learn
Listen to Learn: Monthly Cultural Celebrations at UPrep

During the 2021–2022, the Diversity and Community Office is dedicating each month to one cultural identity.

How we will honor the culture identities within the UPrep community this year

By E-chieh Lin, Director of Diversity and Community, and Patrick King, Diversity and Community Program Manager

At UPrep, the fabric of our community is rich with diverse cultures and experiences, and we have honored and celebrated these cultures throughout our school’s history. We take opportunities to learn about and understand the individuals that make up our community, to build on and celebrate our differences, and to work on understanding and valuing cultures that are not our own. This year, the Diversity and Community Office is dedicating each month of the academic school year to one cultural identity. This gives our community dedicated time to celebrate each group with honor and pride.  

Our 12+ student affinity and alliance groups are excited to share parts of their culture to help us learn more about holidays, histories, experiences, foods, writers, and more. This sharing is student-driven, with students creating a plan for communicating what they want the community to learn about these cultures. For example, students from the Middle Eastern Heritage Club planned this September’s North African and West Asian Heritage Month. Student leaders Elinor A. and Parisa H. are highlighting the region’s rich and diverse history through books, art, architecture, and food. They intentionally wanted to counteract how many people think of conflict and war when they hear about these cultures. During Community Time, Parisa will give a short talk about why the month is called North African and West Asian Heritage Month instead of Middle Eastern Heritage Month. Cultural information from this region is being shared via the TVs in the Commons and the Administration building, on the bulletin board outside of the Diversity and Community Office, and via Instagram.

Starting in October, you’ll hear from Upper School Affinity group leaders, faculty, staff, and some parents and guardians as they share their experiences and connections to these celebrations of identity in the Listen to Learn series on the PrepTalk blog. Information about cultural identity celebrations will also always be highlighted throughout the school day—on screens around campus highlighting the cultural identity, in special menus that represents the cultural identity at the Commons Café, and on the UPrep Instagram account. Here is each month’s chosen identity exploration and celebration for the 2021–2022 school year:

September: North African and West Asian Heritage Month

October: Latine Heritage Month 

November: Indigenous Heritage Month 

December: Multiracial Heritage Month 

January: Jewish Heritage Month 

February: Black and African American Heritage Month 

March: Disability Pride Month 

April: Muslim Heritage Month 

May: AAPIDA Heritage Month

June: Pride Month 

A complete diversity, equity, and inclusion event calendar for this school year is located here.

Read more blogs in the Listen to Learn series.

More from PrepTalk