B the Change at BAHS creates place for education, resources and inclusiveness at school
B the Change at Bellefonte Area High School aims to educate, provide resources, and create a safe and accepting place for students to learn and raise awareness for interests they’re passionate about. And that’s exactly what junior Lillian North aimed to do when helping create the club last school year with classmate and co-president Cecilia Mazzocco.
Now, more than a year into its creation, its student leadership works together to spread awareness about a variety of topics such as environmental stewardship, mental health and national recognitions such as Indigenous People’s Day, Black History Month and Women’s History Month. Those are just a few among many subjects.
“We’re giving students a voice to speak out about what they care about without judgement and in a nonbiased way,” North said. “If someone is passionate about something and it falls in line with our constitution, we put our own personal biases away to help get that message out.”
That’s done by making posters, setting up meetings and bringing in guest speakers. All that is open to the student body, but not required to be a part of, members of the club said.
Led by students and facilitated by staff adviser Ed Fitzgerald, more than 20 students are members of B the Change at any given time during the school year. It also aims to follow Bellefonte Area School District’s diversity, equity and inclusiveness goals, North added.
According to its bylaws, “the club’s overall mission (is) to provide a more open and empathetic school, which will result in an increased environment of equity for all. The hope would be that this environment will have a spill-over effect into our community.”
*By Brit Milzzo, public relations director, BASD