The Progress of Change with Gateway 2 Change


By Kamila Zendran, Video Staffer

Gateway 2 Change is an organization that FHN has been a part of for two years. The organization started following the events of Ferguson, which people say affected the whole community with issues on diversity and race. FHN takes eight chosen students to a select location to pair with a different school that will lead to an exchange of knowledge with one another. The goal is to exchange enough knowledge to create an empowered student community and help transform the minds of others to help change the world. There are three events that take place in a different location every year, each event takes about five days. The location this year is at Saint Louis University in Downtown St. Louis.

“The development of others and the development as a group will hopefully create an impact that will lead to a better school environment,” Delaney Chapman, one of the eight students chosen, said. “I’d like to do more with our sister group to get to that point, to get more educational impact out of each other.”

Erin Steep, a FHN assistant principal, is the main sponsor for this event and Stephanie Johnson, a counselor at FHN, is a co-sponsor. Steep talks about how her normal daily schedule relating with discipline and student involvement that helps her facilitate over the student conversation. She was asked to be the main sponsor last year due to her role in the school community. The eight students chosen are recommended and have certain characteristics that appeal to what the initial goal is, and since only eight students can go, it is vital for the sponsors to find the ones who can take what they learn and expand it with the community and peers that they surround.

“The students who I chose are students who I felt talked to a ton of different people and who had mature enough viewpoints to take on more difficult conversation,” Steep said.

The event consists of 350 students who go through sessions and then have deep, tough conversations while the advisors watch over. The advisors make no comment to what’s going on so students can learn to develop a more open mind and take others points of view into consideration without adult bias.

In the future, “I hope to get more people knowing of what Gateway 2 Change is doing,” KeDar Gates, one of the eight chosen, states is his goal for the program.

As Gateway 2 Change is progressing as a group, they change their focus as events in the community take place. Erin Steep encourages the use of the hashtag #Gateway2Change to help spread the awareness of the goals and encourages students to help their community be a more positive, better place.