Academy students participate in Willamette University history class.

Throughout the fall semester, ten Willamette Academy students participated in a workshop series in partnership with Willamette University History professor Bianca Murillo entitled “The Struggle is My Life: The Life & Times of Nelson Mandela”. This workshop series allowed students to explore Nelson Mandela’s personal and public life starting from childhood and continuing through his struggle against apartheid and racial oppression, and later his presidency, in South Africa.

Students read Mandela’s autobiography, “Long Walk to Freedom” and participated in several workshop discussions led by professor Murillo. Further, the students attended and participated in two sessions of Murillo’s University class based on the same subject. These discussions allowed Academy students to experience being in a college level classroom, both observing and participating alongside Willamette University students.

Professor Murillo's time and energy contributed to one of the Academy's major goals: the demystification of the college experience for Academy students.
It also gave students an opportunity to hear other perspectives about Mandela and the issues he fought for, gaining a global perspective on systems of oppression in other parts of the world.