The Creator Behind The Career Center Mural


Ayanna Churcher, Staff Writer

The RAHS College and Career Center located just before the B-wing stairwell is an underused resource for many RAHS students. However, Senior artist Aleya Berry is using her art to make this resource well-known.


The idea for a career center mural sprang from numerous things. During Berry’s junior year, Principal Hester visited BSU and asked them what they knew about the college and career center. Many students weren’t aware of the great resource sitting right across the hall from them. After discussion, it was decided that a mural outside the career center would help students want to learn more about this resource.

Hester personally chose Berry to work on this project. After developing ideas in April 2022, Berry was able to meet with Hester and art teacher, Mark Tinsley, to discuss finishing the mural during Berry’s senior year. On October 15th, 2023 Berry was given the go-ahead to start the mural. 


Berry’s passion for this mural has been a big motivator for her. They say, “I want students to feel uplifted and represented and know that they have this support and resource easily accessible.” 

Reflecting on their previous years in high school Berry spoke about how the mural area was referred to by a racist name because black students would hang around there. Aleya hopes to turn this negative connotation positive with their mural. 

Artist: Aleya Berry

Berry has worked with RAHS previously when talking about race having talks with staff about racial bias and how to confront their own biases.

Calm is a work showing how black people must stay calm while the murder of their people surrounds them

This mural is continuing the work she has already begun. Activism has been a big topic in Aleya’s art. During quarantine, Aleya says, they were inspired to make more activist art to release her feelings toward police brutality.

Berry says her piece “Calm” is one she takes pride in. During the beginning of her activism art Berry mainly did pieces on pain and trauma but as time went on they wanted to start making uplifting pieces to 

celebrate black culture. An uplifting piece that Aleya spoke of is “Hair”. 

In “Hair” Berry is celebrating black culture, specifically hair. This piece is important to Aleya because she didn’t grow up with a black woman to teach her to celebrate and love her hair. 

In the future Aleya will be attending Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) to learn more about activist art and speak to different people. She hopes to bring up more uncomfortable conversations and break stereotypes. Aleya says, “I hope to give back to my community in the way I do best which is with art.” She is excited about a new art community and we’re excited to see where she goes.