Zyahna Bryant

Zyahna Bryant is a senior at Charlottesville High School.  She is a student activist, community organizer, and author.  She focuses her work on how race  contributes to the achievement gap and educational inequity.   Zyahna works to connect students of color with resources to overcome barriers to achievement.   She also organizes youth leaders around the conversation about  race, space, and monuments.  As a freshman, she founded the Black Student Union at Charlottesville High School and helped initiate the petition to reconsider the place of Confederate monuments in the Charlottesville community.  In the 10thgrade, Bryant’s activism led to an internship at the University of Virginia’s Carter G. Woodson Institute where she researched roots of racism.   This year Bryant published Reclaim, a collection of poetry and essays written about activism and the experience of Black girlhood.   Bryant has been featured in The New York Times, National Geographic, The New Yorker, Forbes and on Vice News, PBS, CNN, and BET. She has received the Princeton Prize in Race Relations for her advocacy work, and the Harriet Beecher Stowe Center’s student prize.  Bryant is currently considering college offers, but knows that she will continue to “incorporate what I do in academia into politics and activism . . . It’s important to me to bring back what I learn in a way that benefits community.”

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