December 13, 2019
Namiah Miller is one of 21 African American students out of 2,556 enrolled at San Juan Hills. Though he feels connected with the other African American kids, he does not feel as though he has a community at school.
“I don’t feel like there’s really a big community at San Juan. There are clubs like Queer Alliance that are a set things, a community for people to be a part of, and I don’t think that’s a thing that this school,” said Miller. “Maybe there’s just not enough black people, but I don’t think there’s a community.”
Although Miller feels a lack of community in his race at school, he does not feel like an outsider at school when he sees the few African-American kids that are at SJHHS. He notices the lack of diversity, but he has not been made feel maliciously excluded. “I’m aware of the difference, but I don’t walk into school thinking ‘Oh my gosh, they’re gonna treat me horribly different than anyone else here’ because of it,” said Miller.
Miller believes African-American people are not celebrated often enough in their achievements. “Whenever I’m hearing big, important achievements about people making medical advancements or new research, I don’t hear a lot about black people being celebrated for doing those things,” said Miller. “I don’t hear about them in politics, or hear about when they set world records either, and I just don’t see a lot of representation of black people in those areas.”
In the media, specifically movies and TV shows, Miller sees improvement in black representation recently. Movies such as “Black Panther” and shows like “Blackish” represent black people in America, fading away from whitewashing in media.
At school, Miller wants to see SJHHS have a day or week celebrating African-American culture, to make himself and other black students feel more accepted.