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Club faces social issues

Gathering+in+chemistry+teacher+Angela+Montgomery%27s+room%2C+CSI+club+opens+the+floor+to+discussion+of+a+wide+variety+of+topics.+Hoping+to+connect+for+people+to+share+their+culture+and+ideas%2C+CSI+provides+a+safe+space+for+students.
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Club faces social issues

Gathering in chemistry teacher Angela Montgomery's room, CSI club opens the floor to discussion of a wide variety of topics. Hoping to connect for people to share their culture and ideas, CSI provides a safe space for students.

Gathering in chemistry teacher Angela Montgomery's room, CSI club opens the floor to discussion of a wide variety of topics. Hoping to connect for people to share their culture and ideas, CSI provides a safe space for students.

Ava Peinhardt

Gathering in chemistry teacher Angela Montgomery's room, CSI club opens the floor to discussion of a wide variety of topics. Hoping to connect for people to share their culture and ideas, CSI provides a safe space for students.

Ava Peinhardt

Ava Peinhardt

Gathering in chemistry teacher Angela Montgomery's room, CSI club opens the floor to discussion of a wide variety of topics. Hoping to connect for people to share their culture and ideas, CSI provides a safe space for students.

Ava Peinhardt, Staff Reporter

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Though some could expect it to be a crime scene investigation club, the CSI Club focuses on cultural and social issues, and allows for students to participate in debates and discussions about modern issues in order to bring to light the various perspectives surrounding them.

“Our goal is that every student leaves our meetings a little more cultured and open minded than when they came in,” club president Mishal Sayyid said. “In this school’s diversity, we see the chance to learn and strive to better understand our peers and why they think the way they do. We hope that our club introduces new perspectives and reasonings to potentially controversial issues that our society faces today. We’re not trying to preach out ideologies, but explain them.”

To sponsor Angela Montgomery, it’s important to provide a space where students can express themselves without being judged.

“I think this club is very important to students,” Montgomery said via email. “It gives them an opportunity to voice their concerns and questions about a wide variety of topics. Topics that might be “off limits” in a different setting. At the meetings, they can discuss things without feeling like they are being judged for their comments. Everyone is respectful of each other’s opinions.”

Much like the Socratic seminars included in class curriculums, CSI meetings are largely self-sustaining with only a small amount of stimulus introduced before the discussion.

“Usually, we start our meetings off with a short video that introduces the topic of that particular meetings,” Sayyid said. “We then throw out some discussion questions and allow our members to engage in a civil debate. Topics can range from artificial intelligence to gun control and abortion. We’re always open to suggestions.”

One of the main goals of the club is to provide a safe space for students to speak about current issues and allowing them to connect with people with similar viewpoints or backgrounds.

“Humans rely on discussion to connect with others and the world,” secretary Daniel Salameh said via text. “CSI answers that message, allowing for discussion of the issues the current world faces or may be facing in the future. CSI can help expand our sense of the world’s issues and our ability to speak about them more effectively.”

Due to the vast variety of topics, subjects sometimes overlap with those presented in other clubs, leading to a potentially combined discussion.

“Last year we collaborated with the Sexuality and Gender Acceptance Club, otherwise known as SAGA,” Sayyid said. “In a two-part meeting, we discussed the legal and moral issues concerning minors who identified as transgender. We were grateful to have them as it ensured a variety of perspectives and helped us pull away from the chance of having a very one-sided argument.”

Despite the many different regards of the topics brought up, CSI ensures that whoever participates in a seminar walks out with a new viewpoint, even if they don’t necessarily agree wholeheartedly with it.

“It is the fundamental belief of the CSI club that, as members of a cosmopolitan society, we have an important role to play in our lives: the advancement of understanding,” Sayyid said. “By partaking in meaningful discussions we hope to better understand the other side and have the other side better understand us.”

About the Writer
Ava Peinhardt, Staff Reporter

Ava Peinhardt is a junior who is new to the Wingspan staff. While writing has always been a passion of hers, journalism is a new experience that Ava hopes...

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