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Fighting for freedom

MHCC features exhibit on local unsung heroes working for social justice


by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - Each year, students at Roosevelt High School tell the stories of local Freedom Fighters. Their efforts have been on display at Mt. Hood Community College.

This week, students, faculty and members of the public have been treated to a special exhibit at Mt. Hood Community College.

The Freedom Fighters Exhibit features 16 everyday citizens from throughout the community, region and state who are celebrated for their work in social justice.

These local Freedom Fighters, representing various cultural backgrounds, were interviewed by 90 Roosevelt High School freshmen, with their stories captured in a booklet an exhibit.

Freedom Fighters are defined as “people who are part of an organized group fighting against a cruel and unfair government or system.”

The exhibit features Lolenzo Poe, who spoke up in his university black studies class several years ago when the professor presented false information about slavery.

Poe was invited to teach the class, and later went on to complete a pre-law degree and doctorate degree in public administration.

The exhibit also tells the story of Ron Silver, whose parents fled Europe and escaped the Holocaust. He frequently leads civil rights trips for youth in the South.

by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - The Freedom Fighters exhibit will continue across the nation, visiting schools, libraries, churches and civic groups.

The Freedom Fighters Exhibit was brought to MHCC by its Diversity Resource Center and Associated Student Government, in partnership with the West Columbia Gorge Rotary Club.

“I really liked (the exhibit) for the fact that it was students doing something that promoted writing skills and bettering themselves,” said Itan Altamirano, director of diversity for Associated Student Government. “They interviewed people from the community they saw as Freedom Fighters. I think it’s like those papers you write in elementary (school) fashion about someone special to you, and this is one step further — college level. It stands out community wise to recognize people we don’t always identify as heroes who are doing amazing work.”

The exhibit is open through today, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m., at 26000 S.E. Stark St., Gresham. It will continue across the nation, visiting schools, libraries, churches and civic groups.

For more information, visit mhcc.edu.

by: OUTLOOK PHOTO: JIM CLARK - 'It stands out community wise to recognize people we don't always identify as heroes who are doing amazing work,' said Itan Altamirano, director of diversity for Associated Student Government.




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