“Dream a Little Dream of Me”:  A Black Man Dreams of 2050 | Norman Kim-Senior | 7 Min Read

November 9, 2022

Dear Reader,

I hope that this message finds you well. Have you ever stopped to consider what your life might be like in 2050?  Today, I would like to invite you to dream about the future with me. Some people do not like to think about the future, but growing up as a Christian and in poverty, the future was always a place of promise for me as a child. However, my tendency to dream of a good future has been put to the test since arriving in the U.S. When I first came to the U.S., I learned that I was a “Person of Color”. In Jamaica, I knew that I was Black, but it seemed more relevant that I was poor. In the U.S., I came to understand that my Blackness firmly rooted me in this category of People of Color. In the 20 years that have elapsed, I learned the joys and pains that come with my membership in this community. These lessons have convinced me that, given my identity in the U.S., to choose to expect a good future as a Person of Color is an act of survival, defiance, rebellion, and self-love.

About four years ago, I saw an infographic that showed global population growth over time. The graph predicted peak human population of around 10 billion people in 2050, following which the total human population would start to decline. I am not quite sure why but it captured my attention, and it has stayed with me ever since. In 2050, I will be close to retirement age, and my students will be gaining increased power in the professional arena. What about you? Where might you be on your life’s journey? In which group will you find your sense of belonging and what will be the outlook for that group? How will your current school have changed? Will your school be looking at a future of increased possibilities or one of diminished options?

Consider this possibility for a moment. You made it to 2050! You visit your current school, and but for some new technology and perhaps a new building or two, your school’s culture, demographics, and traditions are exactly the same as they are today. What emotion might you feel at that moment? Would you be happy?

Since starting to think about the future in this more concrete way, I…

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Norman Kim-Senior

Born in Jamaica, Norman holds a B.A. in Spanish and Economics. He also has a master’s degree in Spanish and has taught in independent schools for over 17 years. Norman is currently a faculty member at Episcopal High School where he teaches Spanish, serves as a student advisor, and is the assistant coach for boys' JV soccer. Norman is also the Director of Externships for the McCain-Ravenel Center. He is passionate about building and sustaining good communities both within the school context, as well as in society as a whole. Norman welcomes opportunities to build mutually beneficial relationships between schools and community organizations so that students can gain direct experience of the work of creating healthy communities. Norman’s wife, Tran Kim-Senior, also works at Episcopal as a Senior Associate Director of Admissions. She is always a vital voice in the editing process and a passionate social justice practitioner as well. In his free time, Norman enjoys spending time with his family, running, biking, reading, watching movies and inventing stories for his kids.