Lauren Harteveldt, a senior at Greenwich Academy, is the founder of AspiringAlly.org, a website that aims to unite young people around the world through allyship by spreading awareness about the importance of diversity, equity and inclusion. AspiringAlly provides resources that help build community in order to create a world free from bullying, discrimination, and injustice. She is also the Co-Chair of the First Selectman’s Youth Commission of Greenwich (FSYC) which is a group of approximately 30 high school students working to improve town-wide youth issues, such as public health, diversity, and education. Through FSYC, Lauren organized a town wide diversity conference for high school students during the 2020-2021 school year. Lauren plans to organize another conference for the 2021-2022 school year. Additionally, she also proposed and implemented the DIVE (Diversity, Inclusion, Values, Equity) Project with YWCA Greenwich to redesign and update the youth curriculum with a team of eight students. Furthermore, Lauren is the co-creator of the Junior First Selectman’s Youth Commission, which was established to link private and public middle school students in Greenwich to make meaningful change and cultivate a collaborative environment. This past summer, Lauren conducted an independent research project with Harvard Professor Katie Rieser where she studied the New York City education system to better understand how to dismantle barriers, comparing the NYC Social Studies Core Curriculum with the Learning For Justice Social Justice Standards for grades K-2. Her investigation revealed that NYC current social studies standards fail to include anti-racist and social justice oriented themes, threatening to reproduce existing inequalities in the next generation.
Lauren is also very involved in her school community. She is the president of the White Anti-Racist Affinity Group, the vice president of the Gay Straight Alliance Club, and the founder of the AspiringAlly club. She is the co-captain of both the Varsity Soccer team and Varsity B Lacrosse team. Finally, she is a member of the Peer Leadership Program at Greenwich Academy/Brunswick School working with freshmen to help ease their transition and foster a love of community.
Click here to purchase tickets and sponsorships.