"There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you."
Our Voice Academy was founded with the mission to elevate marginalized voices and perspectives to improve equity and empathy in education. Author Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie warns us of the danger of the single story - that when we allow a single narrative to become pervasive, we further stereotypes and build walls between one another. Our Voice Academy helps marginalized voices tell those untold stories, and help those who are shaping our future - our educators - gain better cultural competence and empathy.
The multi-day event and community focuses on three primary thematic areas: Access, Visibility and Leadership.
ACCESS: Increase Access - gain access to expert platforms to gain visible leadership and more diverse representation
VISIBILITY: Increase empathy and cultural competence for all educators by sharing untold stories of marginalized communities
LEADERSHIP: Build Leadership by empowering voice, refining vision, and exploring how to mobilize movements
Over the course of three cohorts to date, over 50 educators of color have been empowered to share their stories and better advocate for equity in education. By raising cultural awareness and competency for more educators, they are creating a movement to increase equitable practices for all students.
Our Voice Academy is excited to partner with ISTE to provide OVA fellows with additional training and guidance around public speaking through the ISTE Community and TED Masterclass program. Select speakers will be chosen to speak at #ISTE2020. ISTE shares the goals of OVA to elevate the voices of underrepresented educators.