‘Rines Minority Scholars Program members host county-wide retreat

Hezekiah Likekele and Nana Osei Tutu

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On March 17, Watkins Mill hosted the 7th Annual Intra-County Minority Scholars Program. The Minority Scholars Program is a countywide, student-led and student-based program where minority students come together and find ways to close the achievement gap.

The day started early for the Wolverine MSP members who arrived early to help MSP sponsor Sandy Young set up. The event was originally planned to be held here at Watkins Mill but due to the in-climate weather and WMHS theater production of Beauty and the Beast, it was rescheduled at Gaithersburg High School.

“This was just a really nice experience because everyone was being so supportive of each other even though we were all from different schools…we were all mingling,” senior Megan Dakwa said. Sixteen high schools and three middle schools showed up to make an impact, showing significant growth since the previous year.

The wolverines and the task force planned activities to last the entire day, starting with a general assembly to introduce the event host and county representatives present. Around halfway through lunch was served for more than 300 students, sponsored by Potbelly Sandwich Shop. During the afternoon session, the Watkins Mill African dance team lead by Dakwa gave an energetic performance.

“We were a little nervous because it was a big crowd but once we got up there everyone was super hype and supportive throughout the whole thing, there was not one quiet moment. It literally felt like performing in front of your friends,” Dakwa said.

Watkins Mill MSP President Victoria Joya explained that everyone must work together to help close the achievement gap even if you are not a minority. “We are planning on having an MSP retreat within our own school and open it to all the students of Watkins Mill,” Joya added.

The day was successful and a wonderful experience for everyone who went. One of the biggest highlights of the day for WMHS students was the farewell applause for Young, who will be transferring over to teach International Baccalaureate courses in Bulgaria.

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