Rocks Adding Ways to Fight Systemic Racism


photo by Mason Kolb

Trinity has taken multi-faceted steps to educate the community about systemic racism.

Mason Kolb, Staff Reporter

One of the country’s greatest dilemmas is how to end systemic racism. Trinity has taken a muti-faceted approach to fighting racism and exclusion.

Trinity media specialist Mrs. Betsy DeGolian has been working with a new program started by the Archdiocese called “Walking in Our Shoes.”

DeGolian said, “This program is designed to help people understand systemic racism. It is divided into listening, learning, reflecting, and acting. I went to a meeting regarding the program at the end of last school year and talked to (Trinity Principal) Dr. (Dan) Zoeller about implementing it here, specifically with the faculty.”

Without learning about how we got to today, we can’t hope to get past it and overcome some of the issues that we are currently facing today.”

— Trinity media specialist Mrs. Betsy DeGolian

Part of  DeGolian’s approach has been to get information to faculty on ways to continue to help and support students.

She said, “Within Trinity, I have talked at faculty meetings this semester. This is where I presented the framework for the program and encouraged people to work towards a couple of the goals for the program.”

In October deGolian took part in a Diversity Inclusion Summit held at Trinity. Sixty students, faculty, staff, parents, alumni, and board members took part in the discussions.

DeGolian also plans to spread awareness in one of Trinity’s newest clubs. She said, “In terms of students, Mr. (Mitch) Greenwell and I started a new club at Trinity, the Black Student Union, which is going to be more student led. Our goal is for students to talk about what they want to talk about and learn more about. We at some point hope for them to do more outside the club and to talk with other Trinity students, not just about systemic racism but other topics as well.”

Trinity teacher and Counseling Department head Mrs. Lucia Simpson has also been assisting DeGolian in providing information.

Simpson said, “We are working on how teachers can help and support students, not just students of color but also help other students expand their worldview and make sure that we’re supporting all students and that they all feel welcome at Trinity. We’re looking at ways to work with student groups — whether it’s with Character Talks or other ways to get smaller groups of students together to discuss issues and keep students informed.”

DeGolian and Greenwell plan to have the Black Student Union work with groups outside Trinity as well.  “Since the club’s foundation, we have been working with the Black Student Union at Sacred Heart Academy. We’ve taken a lot of guidance from them due to their organization being around a lot longer than ours.

“At first, we hope to do some social events with Sacred Heart’s club, and by the end of the second quarter have a meeting with them just as a chance to hang out and form some friendships. Going forward, we hope to have a bigger event in the spring.”

During the first semester, students taught by DeGolian and Mr. Chad Waggoner visited the Frazier Museum to learn about West Louisville, redlining, and its current impact on the city.

DeGolian said it’s important to learn about and discuss systemic racism in our daily lives. She said, “Without learning about how we got to today, we can’t hope to get past it and overcome some of the issues that we are currently facing today.”