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Opening Performance

Elizabeth Acevedo is the daughter of Dominican immigrants. She is a National Poetry Slam Champion. The Poet X (HarperCollins, 2018) is her debut novel.

“Our bodies have been bridges,” proclaimed the Dominican-American poet Elizabeth Acevedo. “We are the sons and daughters, el destino de mi gente, black, brown, beautiful, viviremos para siempre, Afro-Latino hasta la muerte.”

Ms. Acevedo was performing at the Word Up Community Bookstore in the Washington Heights neighborhood of New York City in October 2016. Her collection of poetry, Beastgirl & Other Origin Myths, had just been published. Surrounded by books and an audience of about 30 people, she performed her spoken word, seamlessly switching between English and Spanish.

Upper School Student Diversity Conference

January 21, 2019

9am - 3pm

Episcopal High School



Building Bridges: Shoulder to Shoulder, Lifting All Our Voices (Link)

Sponsored by the Office of Community and Equity, Episcopal High School's 3rd Annual 2019 MLK Jr. Day Symposium is a campus-wide initiative to honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and celebrate his legacy and ideals. This year's theme: "Building Bridges: Shoulder to Shoulder, Lifting All Our Voices" aims to bring together a variety of voices and perspectives to foster greater awareness of the role Dr. King has played in the lives of all Americans and to facilitate conversations and workshops that promote equity and inclusion within our community and the larger global community of which are a small part.

In addition, this year's symposium will be the host space for the Virginia Diversity Network's Upper School Diversity Conference. We will welcome approximately 100 additional high school students from Virginia independent schools joining the program and offering workshops for our students.

Tentative Schedule

8:00 - 9:00am BREAKFAST
9:00 - 10:00am Opening Performance: Elizabeth Acevedo
10:15 - 11:30 Concurrent Workshops
11:30 - 12:45 LUNCH
12:45 - 2:00 Concurrent Workshops
2:00 - 3:15 Closing Keynote: Richard Blanco




Closing Keynote

Richard Blanco was born in Madrid and immigrated to the United States as an infant with his Cuban-exile family. He was raised in Miami and earned a BS in civil engineering and MFA in creative writing from Florida International University. Blanco has been a practicing engineer, writer, and poet since 1991. His collections of poetry include City of a Hundred Fires (1998), which won the Agnes Starrett Poetry Prize; Directions to the Beach of the Dead (2005), winner of the PEN/American Beyond Margins Award; Looking for the Gulf Motel (2012), winner of the Thom Gunn Award, the Maine Literary Award, and the Paterson Prize; One Today (2013); Boston Strong (2013); and How to Love a Country (forthcoming 2019).

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