Hannah Gedion is a senior at Mira Costa High School. She is captain of the Varsity Girls’ Golf team, member of the Varsity Girls’ Basketball team and singer in the choir program. Noticing a lack of diversity in the texts she was being taught academically, Hannah began thinking about what other ways students were having valuable perspectives withheld from them. That’s when she came across ethnic studies and realized that was a perfect solution to the issue. Studying different cultures and ethnicities makes global citizens out of our high school students and helps them form meaningful relationships with all kinds of people through empathetic connections.
Taking action in June 2020, Hannah first became involved with Diversify Our Narrative, a national organization with 501(c3) status. She has since started the Manhattan Beach Unified School District Chapter of the organization, which is now an official high school club. She is a current member of the Equity, Diversity, Social Justice, and Inclusion Committee, which works under the MBUSD school board to provide input and feedback on how to create a more inclusive environment for the residents of Manhattan Beach.
Often the only African American in the classroom, Hannah has sat through numerous insensitive, ignorant or misinformed comments and conversations creating very uncomfortable situations. Ten years from now, however, Hannah predicts Mira Costa will have a successful ethnic studies course, one that is comprehensive, inclusive and where everyone knows their story will be told.
Hannah is most inspired by Americanah and We Should All Be Feminists by Nigerian author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, and her favorite TED talk is “The Danger of a Single Story” by the same storyteller.