Below are the student spotlights, alumni spotlights, and educators who made a difference from the 2021 Black History Month. The original posts can be found on the BYU McKay School Instagram.
Jasmine Boyle is a McKay School diversity scholars peer mentor. As a mentor, she helps students navigate BYU life by answering their questions. She also participates in events that encourage students to pursue a career as a teacher. In addition to the work she does with students, she also works as a research assistant and serves as treasurer for the Student Council for Exceptional Children club here at BYU. We asked Jasmine a few questions about herself and about Black History Month; we’re excited to share her responses!
How do you honor Black History Month?
I honor Black History Month by educating myself about Black history. I search out the stories of people who have shaped Black history. I love learning about the passions they had and their life stories. My mother performs a Black history program with her first graders every year. It teaches all about important people in Black history.
Who is your Black hero?
My Black hero is my grandpa Floyd Hardwick. He grew up poor in Georgia. In 1965, he moved to New Jersey to get a better job to provide for his family. In 1983, he opened his own business called the Washer Doctor. He would fix and sell washers, dryers, and refrigerators. With this business, he put both of his children though college, and he sent his youngest to a private school. He is well known in his community and is loved by everyone who meets him.
What do you believe can be improved in our current education system?
I think our current education system can be improved by becoming more inclusive of diversity. Education needs to teach and accept more cultures and unique life styles. In doing this, it will normalize being yourself and loving who you are.
Anything else you’d like to share?
We should always be teaching our students about Black history and every culture’s history. It’s great to focus our thoughts on Black history for Black history month, but we need to remember the importance of including people of all cultures year-round.