2020 Students and Alumni of Color Symposium
SAOC's mission is to bring together students and alumni of the Woodrow Wilson School to promote racial diversity, establish productive mentoring relationships, discuss ideas relevant to the social, political and professional development of students of color, and support the social and political development of the wider community.
In spite of social restrictions due to COVID-19, this event highlighted the importance of continued social action and strategic leadership during these uncertain times. Featuring WWS alums Christina Henderson (MPA ’12, Candidate for DC Council At-Large), Angel Padilla (MPA ’13, National Policy Director, Indivisible), Shasti Conrad (MPA ’15, Chair, King County, Washington Democrats), Ricky Hurtado (MPA ’15, Candidate for North Carolina House of Representatives), Deni Taveras (MPA ’03, County Council Member, Prince George's County), and hosted by Clark Wheeler and Sujata Rajpurohit (MPA ’21), this symposium focused on “Political Representation in the Time of COVID-19.”
Panelists addressed topics on diverse representation in the political process, coordinating efforts towards political representation across communities of color, and re-engaging people and communities who have “checked out” with the political process. Underscoring the transformative nature of civic engagement, panelists spoke from positions of power and experience.
Although this symposium was conducted virtually, the passion and significance of becoming active participants in our democracy were palpable. The message was resounding: Get involved. Vote for your beliefs. Engage your community in the political process. And make your voice heard.
We are tremendously proud of our students and alumni who are leading our communities and nation with a heart for public service.