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The Student News Site of The Kinkaid School

The Falcon

The Student News Site of The Kinkaid School

The Falcon

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Affinity Expo provides students with forums for discussion

Upper+School+administrative+assistant+Ms.+Chantae+Higginbotham+shows+senior+Ava+Winn+her+poster+for+the+African+American+Affinity+Group.
Kimetris Baltrip
Upper School administrative assistant Ms. Chantae Higginbotham shows senior Ava Winn her poster for the African American Affinity Group.

C period was over. 

Lunch was about to begin and candy was laid out on every table in the Kinkaid quadrangle on a sunny Thursday afternoon, with community members coming together over shared experiences and stickers reading, “I belong.”

On Aug. 31, 2023, tables in the quad were set out for teachers to present the affinity groups that they host. Students gathered around the different tables to learn about these groups.

The Affinity Expo was created to help students explore affinity groups, which meet every other Thursday after school. Students have nine different affinity groups to choose from to find a place where they feel comfortable.

Ms. Mujidat Shotonwa, director of diversity, equity and inclusion, was very enthusiastic about the expo and affinity groups.

“I define affinity groups as spaces that are created for those who are underrepresented or in the numerical minority to have the majority experience,” Ms Shotonwa said, “It is a space for students to come together and talk about the unique joy and sometimes challenges…and…what it means to have a shared identity.” 

Ms. Shotonwa said that these groups are important because “it’s always nice to have a place to affirm your identity and build community.” 

Affinity groups have gained popularity after being introduced to the Kinkaid Upper School in the 2020-21 school year. The groups were a part of Kinkaid’s diversity initiative to make sure all students are in an environment where they feel like they belong. 

The Affinity Group Expo was part of a larger concept created by Mrs. Erica Baker, director of student life, called Belonging Week, with every lunch period throughout the week showcasing student leadership opportunities, clubs and affinity groups. 

As the school year continues, students will be able to meet with each other, share conversations, spaces, and sometimes even great food.

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About the Contributor
Kavin Mukerji, Staff Writer
Kavin Mukerji serves as a Staff Writer for The Falcon. This is his first year on staff. Kavin is an active member of both arts and athletics, playing for Kinkaid's orchestra, as well as the football, tennis, and wrestling teams. He enjoys hanging out with friends and meeting new people. On Saturdays, he can usually be found enjoying college football.  

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