BHM: Student legacies

What will the legacies of this generation be?


As Manual parent Cindy Johnson sang the last lyric of the Black National Anthem, students in the front rows of the auditorium gave a standing ovation. Photo by Piper Hansen.

Isabella Bonilla

“Legacy. What is a legacy? It’s planting seeds in a garden you never get to see,” Lin-Manuel Miranda said. 

The line is fitting for a musical that defied Broadway’s cultural norms and casted artists of color on a predominantly white stage. It reinforced that everyone has a legacy worth sharing, regardless of how you identify. February in particular highlights this, being Black History month, where generation upon generation of black legacies are lifted high and given life.

While it’s important to respect and honor the past, the present moment is just as crucial. The here and now of what students within these very four walls wish to do and leave for this world exists most strongly. It’s no secret duPont Manual is ranked the top high school in Kentucky and one of the best in the nation, with a 99% graduation rate. Future world leaders, innovators, entrepreneurs, scientists, engineers, medical professionals and authors are sitting at these desks and walking these halls.

 How this has positively impacted students is up to them to tell, as they are prodded more than ever to think critically about their past, present and future mark on this world. What will the legacies of this generation be? 

“Love, life, wealth and happiness,” Tajalia Tillman (12, HSU) said.

“The legacy I want to leave for myself is through my family. I want to leave a legacy of success using a family business and I want my legacy to live as my whole family’s success,” Nylea Elder (11, YPAS) said.

“To be known as a role model in my community,” Rasheno Sanders (11, HSU) said.

“Influence, inspiration. I want to be known as a positive icon in my community, being successful and making a difference,” Christian Shivel (9, HSU) said.

Check out other RedEye articles about Black History Month at