Winton Woods City Schools students, families and community members made an appearance at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center for its third annual “A Night of Freedom” event on March 7. Students from all seven schools gave powerful academic project presentations, musical performances, and contributed to the visual arts gallery walk. The exhibitions and performances were followed by award ceremonies focused on the sensitive subject of freedom.
“This was the first time I attended ‘A Night of Freedom’ and the freedom center,” said Forest Park Officer Rebecca Davis. “Upon entering, the first thing I heard was music being performed beautifully. The event was very well attended and excitement flowed through all three levels of the building. The third floor was of particular interest to me. Students had various displays of projects and stood by to explain the artwork or project. It was wonderful not only to see the hard work of the students but to interact with them about the project. It was very clear students worked hard and retained information. Two particular displays caught my interest. The first was the artwork students crafted with glass. Not only was the work beautiful but the summaries of what it meant to the creators was powerful. The second was the display about women who fought/fight for freedom. The young ladies that prepared the project knew the works of each woman, and it was clear they had admiration for the women they researched.”
“I would highly recommend the event. Not only can you gain knowledge but also renew passion for learning and growing. The students love to see people supporting them and beam at the chance to interact and explain projects.”
The culmination of the evening was the award ceremony featuring several musical performances. The Global Awareness Award was presented to the students whose projects best connected global awareness and/or a current global issue to the themes found in the Freedom Center. The Innovation Award was presented to the students who had a creative and innovative approach to learn from the past to address current local and/or global issues surrounding freedom and individual rights. The Creativity Award was presented to the artists who, through their art form, inspired freedom or used art to communicate to others the important words and ideas of the peacemakers of our world, both past and present. The Inspiring Freedom Award was presented to the students whose projects embodied the ultimate ideal of the Eternal Flame of Freedom and emboldened the community to take part in advocating for freedom.
The Global Awareness Award - "Putting an End to Slavery: Then and Now" - Kameron Edwards, Amanda Pu Mendoza, Sophia Izaguirre, Lucca Oden
The Innovation Award - "Fractured, Not Broken: Dawn of a New Country" - Dieynaba Bah, Jaxon Braswell, Nathanael Dawson
The Creativity Award (Art) - "Spoiled Brat" LaNiyah Milo
The Inspiring Freedom Award - "Fractured, Not Broken" Abigal Evans, Amira Adams, London Lee
The Global Awareness Award - "Immigration Reform" - Royalty Hightower, Jamie Wilson, Ximena Alaniz
The Innovation Award - "You Got Serbed!" Ayden Hassertt and Alex Ingram
The Creativity Award (Art) - "Work is Child Warfare" Wynter Edwards
The Creativity Award (Music) - "Fight To Be Free" Quturah Yisrael
The Inspiring Freedom Award - "You Got Serbed!" Mark Behrendt, Camron Love, Josephine Quao, Myala Sims
“This special evening is connected in a variety of ways to the Freedom Center’s belief that ‘through education and inspiration, everyone can take part in the ongoing struggle for freedom’,” said Community Engagement Coordinator Corina Denny. “All of the awards are designed as a flame, to represent the symbol of the Eternal Flame and ‘lighting the way’. Thank you to the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, volunteers, parents and community for making it another incredible year.”
PHOTO CAPTION: Winton Woods City Schools students, families and community members at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center for its third annual “A Night of Freedom” event on March 7. Photo by Drew Jackson.