Ready. Set. Speak! Culver Talks 2020

Ready.+Set.+Speak%21+Culver+Talks+2020

Matthew Cowan

This year’s Culver Talks started just after 6:00 p.m. at Robert Frost Auditorium, with an estimated 70 audience members. Two ASB members started the evening off going through what the night would entail, and reminding audience members to donate to the Leukemia and Lymphoma society.

The first speaker was Jaylen Rose, a very charismatic and passionate senior who spoke about how the names for Prom Royalty did not consider nonbinary people. He pointed out that CCHS had already had a nonbinary Homecoming King, nonbinary nominees for Prom, and Culver City was more than ready of making the change that allowed Prom Kings or Queens to be also called the nonbinary term “majesty”. It is important to know that during his speech, he said that he identified with his born sex of being male, meaning he was fighting for problems that weren’t even his own – something we rarely see in today’s society.

The second speaker, Sam Schuette spoke about the hard work Kenyans complete in everyday life that prepares them for distance running, and the passion they have for it. He felt the Kenyans were underappreciated for their excellence in distance running, and commented that physical labor and genetics aside, they would not be where they are today without the extreme passion they have for distance running.

Charlie Sisk explained how different types of cars worked depending on the different year they were made or on new laws that passed. As he went through the evolution of cars he brought to the audience’s attention how fun, and how much of an experience it can be to operate complex cars. He concluded by saying that Tesla took away from this experience because all you had to do was push a button to start up the car, and left the audience considering their future automobile choices.

Rickey Ramirez and Bailey Cooper gave the funniest speech of the night while still talking about a very important topic, and will definitely stand out from this year’s Culver Talks. They encouraged the audience to stop complaining about problems and to become the solution to them by doing community service. They showed different ways you can help the community, and showed how heartwarming it can feel to do something for others. Bailey Cooper mentioned how she had helped clean a Syrian refugee camp, and showed pictures of smiling Syrian children. Their talk was very thorough, very funny, and most importantly a great message for the community

Jade Raware spoke about how important it is that black people are shown and learn about Historically Black Colleges (HBCUs) from an early age. She pointed out how most people are unaware of scholarship opportunities for these schools, and are also ignorant how great these schools are. She told the audience whenever she mentioned to people that she wanted to go Xavier University, she was told she could do better, which was frustrating because Xavier is considered a very great school through statistics. Jade’s speech reached fellow black students, who cheered throughout and will hopefully be looking into HBCUs if they were unaware of them, or any college that they’re interested in.

Alba Navas talked about how empathy is like a fairy tale in 2020 – spoken of, but never seen- and when we should be empathetic. She gave a witty speech that made us question our own lives, and if we could be more empathetic and considerate.She talked about being empathetic for someone’s good times and bad times, and how the media(not social media) is desensitizing us to someone’s bad experiences because all we see are bad experiences on the news.

Sabahat Nabiha spoke about how living spontaneously makes her happy, and told others how to do it. She told a funny story about how her spontaneity got her sent to the emergency room, and persisted that in the end she survived, and that it was worth it because you will never have as many interesting moments in your life without being spontaneous.

Ms. Fine, a Chemistry teacher at CCHS, gave a moving speech about how society has hidden important people, and how we can hide ourselves if we hold onto feelings of shame. She broke down what shame was, how it was detrimental to our success, and how to conquer our feelings of shame. She also started a challenge at her talk by posting a link for the Unhidden Challenge, where Ms. Fine sends an email per day for twenty days about how you can unhide yourself.

To end the night, Mieke Hesseling spoke about nonbinary terms in the English language. She pointed out that “it” and “them” have uses as singulars in the English language as well as being plural, and that might be a solution for a nonbinary third person term in the English language. However, she pointed out in other languages there are not good ways to talk about somebody in the third person using a nonbinary term. She said intellectual circles came up with solutions, but they were often hard to work into the speaking aspect of any language. Her point: we need to try harder. 

Speaking of trying harder, I hope more students try harder to come to Culver Talks next year, because it was great experience to hear different opinions from our students. I hope to see you all at the fourth annual Culver Talks next year.