As part of her Girl Scouts Gold Award project, Randi Parks ’24 recently hosted an event to explore the issue of voter suppression. The freshman facilitated a panel discussion with Teresa Hardy, NAACP DeKalb Branch President, community organizer and social advocate Nia Alvarez-Mapp, and ACLU Georgia representative Rahul Garabadu.
“Not only did I exceed my goal of one-hundred participants, but I have already received lots of positive feedback,” said Parks. “And it’s not just that people were saying nice things, I have quantifiable data that shows an increase in the level of knowledge about voter suppression among participants.”
Park’s Gold Award project, “A Nation’s Guide to Diversity and Inclusion,” seeks to help both students and adults learn ways to include diversity and inclusion in everyday life, and to incorporate the four interrelated principles of social justice into their lives: equity, access, participation, and human rights.
The Gold Award is the highest award that a Senior or Ambassador Girl Scout can earn. To become a Gold Award Girl Scout, a scout identifies an issue that’s important to her, then develops and carries out an innovative and sustainable solution with measurable impact. Each project must link to a national and/or global issue.
“During the social unrest that our country has experienced, it led me and my troop to plan and facilitate a successful virtual event that garnered over 80 adults and girls,” said Parks. “I noticed not only a need but a demand for relevant, age-appropriate programming around the social justice movement sweeping the nation and the world.”
“This project will not only benefit the public by providing engaging events to discuss important topics, but will also provide an organization like Girl Scouts with a valuable tool to promote diversity and inclusion across its membership.”
Parks is a member of the Girl Scouts’ Older Girls Advisory Board, a group that helps to create ways for the Girl Scouts of Greater Atlanta Council to name and address issues of diversity, access, equity, and inclusion in the Atlanta community.
At Oglethorpe, Parks is a JEO Scholar, International Studies major on the Pre-Law track, and is active with University Singers, Black Student Caucus, Khayos, and French Language Table. After graduation, she plans to attend law school to pursue her interests in human rights, civil rights, and immigration.