Working for Social Justice at Bryn Mawr

Almost everyone who first visits Bryn Mawr College will tell you they love how much it feels like home, or how strong the Bryn Mawr community is. I can tell you the same, since that is the main reason why I chose to apply to Bryn Mawr College back during my senior year of high school!

At Bryn Mawr, there are many resources, groups and projects fighting for social justice. One of them is the Pensby Center for Community Development and Inclusion.

“Pensby” as students call it, has an amazing staff working on interfaith services, diversity/equity/inclusion, international and undocumented students, first-generation students and supporting student groups. As described in their website, the Pensby center “implements programs and activities that address issues of diversity, power and privilege, including but not limited to race, ethnicity, country of origin, class, gender, sexual orientation, religious affiliation and disability, with a goal of improving the campus climate and enhancing community life at Bryn Mawr College”.

This summer, as part of my role in SAAC – Bryn Mawr’s Student Athlete Advisory Committee – as Co-Head of Diversity and Inclusion, with my friend Jackie Fernandez ’21 (Crew Team), we worked alongside Pensby to create a workshop series for athletes, coaches and staff.

This workshop series launched in August, after months in the making, and presented our first topic: white supremacy in sports. It was a powerful, personal and educational conversation alongside fellow athletes and our coaches, with the caring help and expertise of Ann-Therese, Vanessa and Kathryn from the Pensby Center staff.

Future sessions will explore privilege, recruiting, and how to build a better athletics community. SAAC’s Diversity and Inclusion upcoming projects – an inclusive athletic recruit tour alongside Black at Bryn Mawr, *Mujeres, ASA, etc; an athletic bias report system; a lacrosse clinic for Philly schools and much more – combined with the Pensby Center’s expertise, aim at promoting a more equitable athletics community at BMC. With the help, feedback and power of the Bryn Mawr community we are setting an example for fellow athletes and schools.

Right at the end of our workshop, not only was I amazed by the extremely high turnout, but also felt nostalgic… I remembered why I first chose Bryn Mawr, my first time visiting campus and talking with Professors or seating in some interesting classes. That feeling of belonging, of home, of community came back to surprise me once again and to assure me that I am were I was meant to be.

A photo of the Pensby Center, located above Applebee Field and next to Cambrian Row.

A view of the Pensby Center, located above Applebee Field and next to Cambrian Row.

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