Milton Hershey School Foreign Language Teacher Celebrates Diversity
Featuring Lisa Pietropola, MHS Foreign Language Teacher
At Milton Hershey School, we enroll students, support families, and hire staff from many different cultures who practice various religions, speak many languages, and come from different parts of the country to celebrate diversity.
MHS Foreign Language teacher Lisa Pietropola honors diversity in her classroom and encourages students to recognize their individual identities and backgrounds.
“I believe education is stronger and more impactful when students see themselves being represented in the content,” Pietropola said. “I want my classroom to be a safe place for all students to learn and develop empathy for each other and cultures around the world.”
The MHS Multicultural and Global Education program exposes students to diverse people and cultures in the classroom starting in pre-K and continuing all the way through 12th grade.
“When students are able to share their heritage with others, they create a stronger bond within themselves and their families,” Pietropola said. “Especially at MHS, when students live far away from their communities, having a strong connection to their culture helps them feel accepted.”
Students benefit from learning foreign languages as it teaches problem-solving and critical thinking skills. This curriculum also allows students to be more flexible and accepting of others.
“Language learning is innately communicative; therefore, having students learn different ways to contribute in their community (local and global) is a lifelong skill that will benefit them in any role they choose to pursue,” Pietropola said.
Fonati Abrokwa ’01, MHS Special Assistant to the President for Diversity and Inclusion will be working with school leadership to perform a curriculum programming audit. Her goal is to make sure MHS programming is representative of the student body.
“Lisa is a prime example of MHS faculty celebrating diverse perspectives and experiences in her classroom,” Abrokwa said. “She is providing another opportunity for students to be engaged with different cultures that may be different from their own.”
Milton Hershey School is carefully following federal and state guidelines, CDC considerations, and MHS-established health and safety protocols to keep our campus a safe, nurturing, and healthy place. Any group photos of unmasked subjects were taken prior to the face coverings mandate.