Self-Expression at Rocky


Art made by Rocky students lines the walls.

It’s important to express yourself.

— Maddison Jackson, 11th

No matter what culture or place you come from, it’s important that you feel safe and happy when expressing yourself in public.

When it comes down to it, self-identity and self-expression aren’t so different from each other. The way you identify can have an influence on how you express yourself. Even if you choose to keep identity and expression separate, it is still important that you feel safe and are able to dress and act how you’d like.

“My experiences shape my expectations,” said Mr. Joiner, a guest speaker at the Black History Month presentation on February 17th. This can mean many different things to many different people. If you have had bad experiences, you may expect bad things. If you have bad experiences with expressing yourself, you might want to suppress that part of you in the future.

Minorities such as people of color and the LGBTQ+ community sometimes struggle when it comes to free self-expression. Everyone should feel safe when expressing themselves, unfortunately, not everywhere is like that. When asked if students feel like they can express themselves at school, clothing and art-wise, students believe that you should be able to express yourself freely and safely.

“Yeah, I think so,” Rocky sophomore Charlie Park said.

“Yes,” junior Makayla Kuti agreed.

“I think the art department is really fun, and there’s a lot to do there, they have a lot of supplies. I think it’s, like, I don’t know, that’s what I like to do, and I think they do everything here,” freshman Scout Harper said.

Students agree that the art department at Rocky is a good outlet for creativity and self-expression.

“Yes, I could express my creativity through that art project,” sophomore Gray Treanor said after being asked about their creative endeavors at Rocky. 

“There was like this little coral reef type thing I made, it was like a rock, and it had, like, coral pieces stuck onto the rock,” Treanor explained. The art department is a versatile part of Rocky Mountain High School where students creatively express themselves in a way that isn’t harmful to others.

The main ways students can self-express themselves at school is through clothing and art. Rocky creates a place where students should feel safe to wear what they want and create what they want. 

As a part of the LGBTQ+ community myself, I find it hard sometimes when I dress and act how I want. I fear judgment and even harassment from other students. I believe that the only way for students to feel happy and safe when expressing themself is for the rest of the student body to be open-minded and aware of what experiences their peers may be going through. Everyone deserves a chance to be themselves.

Do your best to make sure other students feel safe when expressing themselves.