Sadé Ratliff, a current sophomore at Stonehill College, is firmly commitment to problem-solving and civic engagement, while speaking out passionately about social and racial justice. Sadé’s zeal for advocacy, human rights, and equity is evident in her efforts to create change on campus. The depth of her engagement in her short time at Stonehill is remarkable. Last year, she received a Community Engagement Award, presented to individuals who have demonstrated a strong commitment to community service. Beyond her academic studies in Political Science and International Studies, she has been deeply involved in the founding of a new student leadership group, Students In Action, which focuses on racial inclusion and equity. As a member of this group, Sadé volunteered to host racial justice virtual processing spaces for students and community members of color, in collaboration with the Office of Intercultural Affairs. Sadé was also integral in the implementation of a sit-in, drawing more than 500 members of the Stonehill community, calling for greater racial diversity, inclusion, and equity at the College and beyond. Last semester, she also organized a panel and served as a panelist following a showing of the movie Pushout: The Criminalization of Black Girls in Schools.
As a young activist I am asked all the time why I do what I do. And I always muster up an eloquent answer, but truth be told the only reason I continue to sacrifice my time and energy to make the world more equitable is because I know what it feels like to be subject to inequity. As a young black woman who spent most of her life bouncing between parents, I have experienced countless roadblocks on my journey. I have had to scale the walls of homelessness, abuse, lack of access to opportunity and more. My only mission in life is to prevent those roadblocks from pushing girls and women of color away from their dreams. My hope in my activism is that through my work young women of color will see that they too can pursue whatever goals they set forth. We all know that representation matters, but it is my goal to ensure that representation is created and sustained to produce a more equitable world for people that look like me.