U-High Midway

Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

BUILDING+FRIENDSHIPS.+Eddie+Christensen%2C+Will+Trone%2C+Ethan+Van+Ha+and+Niyati+Rana+enjoy%0Alunch+at+Asians+Students%E2%80%99+Association+where+they+have+found+community+a+place+to+discuss+common%0Aexperiences.+ASA%2C+like+many+others%2C+had+an+influx+of+freshman+this+year.
Back to Article
Back to Article

Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

BUILDING FRIENDSHIPS. Eddie Christensen, Will Trone, Ethan Van Ha and Niyati Rana enjoy
lunch at Asians Students’ Association where they have found community a place to discuss common
experiences. ASA, like many others, had an influx of freshman this year.

BUILDING FRIENDSHIPS. Eddie Christensen, Will Trone, Ethan Van Ha and Niyati Rana enjoy lunch at Asians Students’ Association where they have found community a place to discuss common experiences. ASA, like many others, had an influx of freshman this year.

Maria Shaughnessy

BUILDING FRIENDSHIPS. Eddie Christensen, Will Trone, Ethan Van Ha and Niyati Rana enjoy lunch at Asians Students’ Association where they have found community a place to discuss common experiences. ASA, like many others, had an influx of freshman this year.

Maria Shaughnessy

Maria Shaughnessy

BUILDING FRIENDSHIPS. Eddie Christensen, Will Trone, Ethan Van Ha and Niyati Rana enjoy lunch at Asians Students’ Association where they have found community a place to discuss common experiences. ASA, like many others, had an influx of freshman this year.

Jacob Posner

Hang on for a minute...we're trying to find some more stories you might like.


Email This Story






Asian Students’ Association and Latinos Unidos have gained more ninth grade students this year than previously, according to club leaders.

The growth in enrollment — the 9th, 10th and 11th grade classes each have more than 150 students compared to just 120 seniors — means more students to build community, which club leaders  agree their cultural and affinity groups provide.

Ethan Van Ha, ninth grade, is a member of ASA.

“I think it’s nice because you get to meet a lot of people like you, which is why I think a lot of freshmen do it,” Ethan said.

Hongjia Chen

Zoe Dervin, vice president of Spectrum said the group has always had more ninth graders in proportion to older kids.

“When you’re a freshman, you’re looking for some stability and also for validation in your identity,” Zoe said. “So you can come to Spectrum and find your people, but by the time you’re a sophomore you’ve found your niche. You’ve found your identity, and you don’t necessarily need” Spectrum anymore.

Zoe also said Spectrum is a place where nonheterosexual — 48 percent of girls and 25 percent of boys, according to the health and wellness survey — or gender nonconforming people can relax.

“It’s not that there’s open hate in this community. That’s not what it is. It’s more so that you don’t have to worry about explaining your identity to people,” Zoe said, referring especially to people who don’t know much about the LGBTQ+ community.

ASA and Latinos Unidos serve a similar purpose in fostering pride in their members.

“Being Asian is an identity that people have come to be proud of. They don’t want to hide it. We’re helping them express their pride — their connection to who they are,” Hongjia Chen, president, said.

For Sofia Kouri, president, Latinos Unidos is both a place for Latinx people to explore the diversity of their ethnic background and for the wider U-High community to learn about an important history not discussed enough.

“Latinx is not a racial identity, it’s ethnic — you have people who are white or black or indigenous who are all identified under this umbrella term,” Sofia said. “It helps you learn about different aspects of those identities. The identity of Cuban-American is very different from Argentine or Mexican.”

Leave a Comment

If you want a picture to show with your comment, go get a gravatar.




Navigate Left
  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Weber moves forward with semester system; faculty votes for equal-length option

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Six U-High students attend annual diversity conference

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Wellness survey assembly prompts further student skepticism

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    First major snowfall complicates travel

  • News

    Jazz Band holds fall concert

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    High school principal Stephanie Weber to leave in June

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Homework over break, teacher feedback top student concerns at semester meetings

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Dialogos brings student voice into strategic planning

  • News

    Negotiations begin for new faculty contract

  • Freshmen discover community in identity clubs

    News

    Computer science classes broaden course topics

Navigate Right
The Student News Site of University of Chicago Laboratory High School
Freshmen discover community in identity clubs