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Week 12 - Student of the Week

Downsview Secondary School
Student of the Week
Week of December 12, 2016

Dami L.

Downsview, for the week of December 12th, your Student of the Week is Dami L.
Dami is in her final semester at Downsview.

Let’s get right to the praise for Dami, of which there is lots. Frist, from Mr Wallace: “Dami has contributed to Downsview ever since the moment she walked into the school. She has always been an insightful, powerful, intelligent, young woman. She also knows how to be angry; for the most part, that anger comes out of a desire for justice, and a desire to be seen for who she is. But Dami doesn't stop at her own experience; she sees deeply into the structure of relationships and how they can raise up or hold back anyone, particularly young women. Need an advocate? Get Dami. But Dami has allowed herself and others to see another side of who she is this year. Anger is a limited emotion and Dami has understood that and begun the move to a place of wise, patient determination; when anger is needed she can call on it, but other approaches often have a more profound impact. Nowhere was this transformation more clear than in her participation in the recent Black Brilliance Conference. She developed and delivered a powerful workshop on the impact of Donald Trump on Black Politics. During several of her sessions she was called on to demonstrate extreme poise when some startling and inflammatory opinions were expressed. She did so like a pro. There is a committed group of students who is pushing the social justice agenda in the school; Dami is always there. May her deep, grounded sense of peace continue to develop; within it is a radical power that can transform all who know her and many who don't.”

And, hear this, from Mr Chapman: “Fearless. I see this in media class. We face serious issues and she is not afraid of them. She’s intelligent and she’s a deep thinker. I realize that I kind of wait to start class until she’s here.” Ms de Jersey has this to add: “Dami is clear-headed and kind in a way that isn’t fluffy or light. She’s kind in the sense that she values experience and is able to apply a socio-political lens to experience. Dami is a burgeoning activist, a challenger of the status quo and a valued Downsview student. Her influence on others runs deep.” Ms Jubinville says, “Although I have not taught Dami recently she was a pleasure to have in my classes. She is a deep thinker with biting wit and many questions, which kept me on my toes. She is well on the way to finding her place in this world. Congrats!”

Rounding out the accolades for Dami, we have Ms Polley, who has this to say: “I know I'm not giving away a big secret when I say, teachers talk...and the talk about Dami made me very excited when I found out she wasn't just in one class I was teaching, but two! As a student, Dami is inquisitive, intelligent, powerful and passionate. I know she doesn't believe this, but she is a natural leader. People are drawn to her, listen when she contributes to discussion and are easily persuaded to come around to her point of view. I believe she has this power because of the way she approaches people. She recognizes that we all come with our own barriers, perspectives, backgrounds and values and is able to almost customize her approach or argument to get her point across. It is an incredible skill to have, especially coupled with her idealism that we can all be our better selves.”

Dami, when you received this honour, you mentioned that you would remain a steady presence at Downsview after you leave us in January. This school and this community matters to you; you won’t disappear. For all the reasons outlined by the admiring DSS staff, this makes us are very, very fortunate. We thank you and we salute you, Dami, once again, as our Student of the Week.

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(416) 395-3200

7 Hawksdale Rd
North York, ON
M3K 1W3

Superintendent: Linda Curtis
Trustee: Alexandra Lulka

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