Social Justice Collective




Due to the pandemic, no residential programming will be offered in the summer of 2021 and plans for remote offerings are still being considered by the College. For details about this program for summer 2021, please fill out our inquiry form or check back here in January 2021.

Icon showing a symbol of a hand hold a heartEngage in the study of social justice at Sarah Lawrence College!

Designed to give high school students an immersive experience into Sarah Lawrence College's pedagogy, this program provides students theoretical, historical, and present-day perspectives on social and cultural issues involving class, gender, sexuality, and race. This interdisciplinary intensive will give students a chance to learn, discuss, and apply their knowledge through the creation of multi-media projects including: blogs, short films, podcasts, and visual art. Throughout this process, students will be guided and mentored by members of Sarah Lawrence’s award-winning faculty and renowned alumni. Students will develop their academic skills in a rigorous intellectual environment by focusing on the social justice issues that matter most to them. Students will also explore how creative writing, visual art, performance, and social media impact social justice movements. Online components of this program will allow students to have virtual tours with national leaders in social justice and trainings from community organizations who are making an impact.

We welcome students entering the 10th, 11th, or 12th grades the following fall.


Monday through Friday

10–11:30 a.m. synchronous zoom class on empathy, privilege, and online activism
11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. independent work on student activism blogs
1:30–3 p.m. student small group work on documentary films
3–4:30 p.m. synchronous zoom class with film or photography professor (including one-on-one conferences)

other activities including:

  • workshops from national nonprofits including: One Love, Anti-Violence Project, Santa Fe Dreamers Project, African American Policy Forum, and others
  • zoom studio visits with working artists
  • virtual museum visits

Program Costs

Application fee $50
Deposit $250
Remaining tuition $2,928

Please note: students may need to purchase supplies to complete course assignments during the program. Please budget around $100.

Limited financial assistance is available for this program. Should Sarah Lawrence be unable to provide the necessary amount possible for you to attend, a full refund of your registration fee and deposit will be provided.


Institutional Oppression: How we all participate and how we all can dismantle it

Students will look at the systems of oppression and how we interact with said system. Students will be instructed to re-create the world we live in and answer the questions of what do we need to to be anti-racist, anti-biased, and how do we disrupt and eradicate oppression? We will collectively answer these questions and create action items to dismantle institutional oppression via a collaborative microsite.

Photo of Natalie GrossNatalie Gross is currently the Director of Civic Engagement and Social Justice at Eugene Lang College at The New School University where creates programs and facilitates discussions on equity, diversity, and inclusion. She has facilitated workshops on social justice at the SLC Early Childhood Center, Harlem Children's Zone, and for student leaders at St. Louis Community College, Pace University Residence Life, and the College of New Rochelle.

Bringing Your Activism Home: Bringing Change to Your Community with Rachel M. Simon

Members of our Social Justice Collective will explore ways to bring our knowledge of social justice issues to create change and take action. Students will explore issues of privilege, marginalization, equality, and justice through texts (essays, poems, films, art, etc.) to take practical steps to increase justice in our communities. We will explore intersectional identity and activism on our feet (and sometimes around a round table, Sarah Lawrence style). I hope that by exploring our individual component identities, students will gain a better understanding of our social constructions of race, class, gender, ability, sexuality, among others which will then allow us to explore larger systems of oppression and eventually ways to dismantle those systems through workshops, readings, and direct actions. Through interactive and collaborative group exercises, we will explore movements including: Intersectional Identities, Contemporary Feminist Activism (in the face of rape culture), Racial Justice (Black Lives Matter, race and the justice system, race and dating, race and education), Theatre of the Oppressed, LGBTQA Concerns (looking beyond marriage), Power & Control Wheel, Race Zone Training, Developing Your Voice, Art & Activism, building your skills as an ally and more.

Rachel SimonRachel M. Simon is the Assistant Director of Multicultural Affairs & Diversity Programs and LGBTQQ Coordinator at the Pace University, Pleasantville campus. Since 2003 she's taught courses in writing, gender studies, lesbian and gay studies, and film at Pace University, SUNY Purchase College, Fordham University, and Bedford Hills Maximum Security Prison. She serves on the Westchester County Government's LGBTQ Advisory Board and is the Vice President of the board of PrideWorks for Youth. Two collections of Simon's poetry has been published: Theory of Orange (2005) and Marginal Road (2009) as well as as a Poem of the Day from the Academy of American Poets at

Radical Re-imagination and Counter Narratives

News publications have a tremendous amount of power in how people are represented, what is labeled as newsworthy, and ultimately, whose story matters. What stories might be absent or go undetected in a world oversaturated with media and bias? Who is being represented unfairly? What narratives are being perpetuated? And what are we as consumers implicit in? This workshop provides an alternative vantage point to news stories. Pulling inspiration from “Counternarratives” by artist, Alexandra Bell as well as activist duo, The Yes Men's satirical recreations of major newspapers, we will be reading news publications and looking critically at how people, particularly marginalized people, are being represented in them. We will discuss the importance and power of images and design in communicating meaning and reinforcing bias. We will consider humor and satire as strategies of resistance. Through a series of hands-on activities we will annotate, redact, and ultimately create the news want to see in the world. News that gives justice to those whose stories are being told.

Alexis LambrouAlexis Lambrou is a facilitator and educator who often works with young people in New York City. She teaches digital photography at the Bard High School Early College. She has taught visual literacy, digital photography, and alternative processes at The New York Public Library, The Brooklyn Public Library, the International Center of Photography, Brooklyn Community Arts and Media High School, New York City's Parks and Rec Centers, Photoville, and the Cheyenne River Reservation. She has received generous support for her teaching through Brooklyn Arts Council, NYC SALT, Aperture Foundation, Magnum Foundation, and the Sioux YMCA.

Power In The Picture with Sekiya Dorsett

Social media and cell phone video have propelled the social justice movement forward. Today, anyone can be a "witness," generating powerful political testimony as they document injustice and share their own thoughts about political issues in real time.

Fortunately, video is an equally powerful tool of imagining a world beyond the problem. In this course, students will explore how video has been used to address social injustices. They will learn about effective methods of using archival video, news clips, and information to fact check and create a compelling video. They will also learn about how to reimagine this video on a wide variety of platforms.

We will use moving images as a way to help us step into a new future, a new self, a new reality. Within the course, students will gain a basic understanding of how to shoot video, record sounds, and use a non-linear editing program. Its purpose is to teach and empower individuals with all experience levels to use the resources they have to share their ideas about the world around them.

Sekiya DorsettBorn in Nassau, Bahamas, Sekiya Dorsett is a queer filmmaker giving voice to issues of equality. In 2008, her first film, Wisdom and Understanding, a short experimental film, made its debut at NewFest Film Festival and the Oakland Black LGBT Festival. In 2009, her short, Sisters, a story about a lesbian woman struggling to reconcile with her mother, was screened at the Austin LGBT Film Festival.

Her first feature documentary, The Revival: Women and the Word, has played at Athena Film Festival, Frameline, Urbanworld, and NewFest Film festival. It finished its run with a screening at the Brooklyn Museum last June and it is distributed by Women Make Movies. Her commercial work has appeared on SYFY, USA Network, BETher, Refinery29, Essence Magazine, and BuzzFeed. 

Students will end the course with a blog to showcase their films, writing, and activism.