The GSA Club presented at the March BGSI Conference and Joanna Riley ’24 and Annabelle Sinatra ’24 led youth family groups at the April Middle School Student Diversity in Leadership Conference.
Gunston’s Gay Straight Alliance (GSA) club recently hosted a session for the 2022 AIMS Belonging in Gender and Sexuality Identity (BGSI) Conference. This virtual event was presented to students, teachers, and administrators in the AIMS community. Dr. Asprion, Ezra Lille ’25, and Angelina Lin ’23 were joined by Gunston’s former DEI Director Cassie Miller as well as former GSA president and founder, Rion McCluskey ’21 to discuss the formation and growth of Gunston’s GSA club.
Their session, entitled, “From Seedling to Tree: Gunston School GSA Shares Their Growing Story,” discussed the activities and outreach that brought community members to the discussion table and how it changed the school community as a whole for the better. Recently, the GSA also collaborated with the Student Diversity Leaders Club (SDLC) to present information about Transgender Awareness Month, and plans to continue their messaging with an upcoming program on the importance of pronouns. The GSA is also in the early stages of planning an event on campus with GSA groups from surrounding schools in the public school and AIMS community.
Dr. Asprion states, "I can not stress enough the importance of freedom of identity expression. The GSA club offers a safe space for students to meet like minded peers and discuss topics that are important for their development. I couldn't be prouder of the support I receive from the Gunston community to continue facilitating this group on campus."
Angelina Lin ’23 adds “Meeting other GSA [club members] really made me happy knowing that there are people like us out there. As a student panelist, I talked to the attendees about what it means for me to have GSA. We also discussed ways of growing our GSA’s but it wasn't just the panelist giving advice, the attendees pitched in as well. It was nice to have a conversation and not just solely a panel where we only talked to the attendees.”
"For the past five years, Gunston students and faculty have played a leadership role in this important and wonderful conference," said Miller, who currently serves as the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer for the Baltimore Public Library. She continued, "This year, Gunston's GSA leaders, faculty, and alumni led a workshop on starting and growing GSA's in schools for over 40 students and educators. Their robust GSA program continues to be a model across the state."
Additionally, this past week, Joanna Riley ’24 and Annabelle Sinatra ’24 volunteered to lead youth family groups at the AIMS Middle School Student Diversity in Leadership Conference (MSSDLC). AIMS was seeking high school leaders to participate in a 6-week training program to be family group leaders for middle school students attending the conference. During the MSSDLC, participants engaged in group activities, identity exploration and various other presentations. Joanna and Annabelle were part of a team of talented student leaders that mentored their respective family groups through activities based on skill building around identity, voice, and community.
- Angelina Lin
- Annabelle Sinatra
- Cassie Miller
- Ezra Lillie
- GSA Club
- Joanna Riley
- Rion McCluskey
- Ryan Asprion
- Student Leadership
- diversity equity inclusion