The entire school got together for the 4th annual convocation, celebrating the beginning of the year and taking time to note its diversity, unity and mission to empower students. Over 60 nationalities were on flag display when Deputy Head of School, Karim Abu-Hydar, called the names of the countries represented by our student body. Our many different genders, races, backgrounds and religions at ACS represent the strength of the school and the larger community it serves.
Three individual members of the community spoke about diversity and their own personal journeys. Junior Anas Adams, class of 2019 shared his diverse background and how ACS reflects what he believes. “It is our diversity that serves as the foundation for our unity, not only as a school, but as different individuals who have been empowered by ACS.” Senior Micha Iriola returned to ACS 4 years ago after leaving in 2006. She admired “that so many of the ACS staff and faculty remembered me.” She said “it shows how much we are all part of the great community and many nationalities and that no one is really forgotten.” Ms. Gutierrez, a 7th Grade English teacher went from war-torn El Salvador, to the US and then to Lebanon where she earned her Master’s degree at AUB. Her background and experiences reminded students that they, too, are empowered with their own education at ACS.
Head of School, Greg MacGilpin, reinforced the message of empowerment, challenging students to take charge of their learning and to grow. He likened the role of the educator at ACS as similar to a farmer saying “We maintain the right conditions for plants to grow but cannot grow for them. The environment at ACS provides the right conditions for students to thrive, but the struggle and leaps must be done by the students, on their own.” The convocation ended with everyone present helping in the creation of a ‘thunderstorm’ in the gym. The noise was loud and comforting, reminding everyone that a little rain never hurt anyone, and in fact, is necessary for a school to grow.