Local Schools Youth & young adult

Film opens eyes to discrimination of earlier era

Janelle Monae stars in a scene from the movie “Hidden Figures.” Students at Bishop Miege High School in Roeland Park received a private viewing of the movie on Feb. 10 thanks to a donor. CNS PHOTO/FOX

by Moira Cullings

ROELAND PARK — Bishop Miege High School students here received a two-hour lesson chock full of history, science and technology in one of the most entertaining ways possible — at the movies.

Thanks to a generous donor, the entire student body received a private viewing of “Hidden Figures” Feb. 10.

The film, which covers everything from black history and women’s history to science and technology, was just the right way to inspire the students to go after their goals.

“‘Hidden Figures’ was the perfect example of everything that our teachers have been telling us since day one — work hard, stay focused, know how to apply what you’ve learned and think outside the box,” said Miege junior Aurora Rodriguez.

“I’m extremely grateful for the opportunity that was given to Miege to be able to enrich our culture and spark our motivation,” she said.

The film is about a team of African- American women mathematicians who served a vital role for NASA during the early years of the U.S. space program.

The women broke down gender, racial and professional barriers to follow their dreams and accomplish something huge for their country and the entire world.

For many of the Miege students, “Hidden Figures” opened their eyes to the injustices many Americans were dealing with at the time.

“I felt that I learned a lot about that time period by watching the movie,” said freshman Kaitlin Thrun.

“And I can say without a doubt that ‘Hidden Figures’ truly changed my outlook on life, in the best way possible,” she added.

Junior Matthew Garr agreed.

“It really made me appreciate the fact that we now live in a time period where these acts are morally and socially unacceptable,” he said.

Learning about our nation’s past outside the classroom and in a more visual manner made the experience even more memorable.

“It was a different way of learning about both our country’s history and black history,” said senior George Lisac.

“Rather than sitting in a classroom, we were able to do something new and exciting that also taught me a side of history I didn’t know,” he continued.

And seeing the movie with the entire school made the experience even more special.

“I thought the movie was a great experience because the school was able to go together,” said freshman Luke Lazarczyk.

“We were able to learn about three women who faced adversity and greatly helped our country,” he said.

About the author

Moira Cullings

Moira attended St. Thomas Aquinas High School in Overland Park and Benedictine College in Atchison. She majored in marketing, minored in psychology and played center midfield for the women’s soccer team. Moira joined The Leaven staff as a feature writer and social media editor in 2015. After a move to Denver, Moira resumed her full-time position at The Leaven and continues to write and manage its website, social media channels. Her favorite assignment was traveling to the Holy Land to take photos for a group pilgrimage in 2019.

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