Students of Color Summit: Agents of Change

Students of Color Conference-33Excitement, friendships and the drive to create change and positive influences are just a few things that the Students of Color Summit generated at CWU earlier this month.

On the first weekend of April, CWU partnered with the Washington Student Association to host over 224 students from 13 universities and schools to celebrate diversity and inclusivity through a fun and immersive environment.

The Summit By Numbers:

224 students

13 schools

31 sessions

6 Keynote speakers

The Students of Color Summit, which took place over two-days on campus, brought incredible keynote speakers from a variety of backgrounds for students to meet and interact with.

Just a couple of the main keynotes included Lydia Brown (autistic disability rights activist) and Richard Sherman (Seattle Seahawks Cornerback). The keynotes were spread throughout the conference between the 31 sessions that were offered.

Each of the 31 sessions included important discussions between students and guest speakers in which they could openly share their concerns and experiences as students of color. Other sessions helped students find outlets for activism in their community with tips on how to address microaggressions or racial bias that they may face in their universities. The summit also encouraged students to dive deeper into their communities to find solutions to these problems through activism, community and university relations.

Richard Sherman

Students of Color Conference-33

The Seattle Seahawks’ Richard Sherman drew in the biggest crowd on Saturday evening in the McConnell Auditorium as he spoke to students and community members about his own experiences through life and his journey to the NFL.

From personal struggles and tribulations through athletics, Sherman advocated that students never give up on their dreams and continue to pursue what they’re passionate about regardless of their skin color.

“Don’t ever let anybody blow your candle out,” Sherman said.

He also encouraged students to initiate conversations about race and inclusivity in their daily lives.

“The more questions that we get, the better conversations that we have,” Sherman said. “You can’t be an agent of change if you’re just silent.”


The energy from the summit and Sherman’s speech rolled into the final hours of Sunday’s sessions and kept students hyped to go out into the world and create positive changes in their communities! This successful event will hopefully encourage students to continue to be “agents of change” each and every day.

For more images/videos from the event and behind the scenes with those who helped make it possible, see below:

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Photos by McKenzie Lakey | Video by Julian Smart

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