DLC’s Guest Speaker Marissa Carpio

This past week, Benet Academy’s Diversity Leadership Council welcomed their first guest speaker of the year. A Benet alum herself, Marissa Carpio was excited to discuss her experience as a Filipino-American woman both in high school and in her professional career. Recently starring in Netflix’s The Sleepover, this film and television actress was candid about her unique experience navigating the industry. In her virtual visit, Carpio touched on everything from racial microaggressions to the importance of self-care. 

Being the daughter of Filipino immigrants, Carpio is proud of her heritage, ethnicity, and culture; however, this was not always the case. She spoke of a conversation with her mother in which she was told to “blend in” and “keep her head down” as people “would not like her simply because she was Asian.” Being among the twelve students of color in her graduating class, Carpio detailed how she used to avoid conversations about race, kept a friend group of mostly Filipino girls, and enjoyed spending time in St. Daniel’s Hall where she participated in the Spring Musical, was a member of the Madrigal Singers, and felt that she could truly be herself. In speaking about her own personal experiences with education, she spoke about the importance of Benet educating all students with a comprehensive education that addresses all cultures and races.

Additionally, she described her multiple encounters with racism over the years: from being called “pig-nosed” and “that weird Chinese girl” to working at a job in which people of different races and educational backgrounds were segregated. It wasn’t until she began acting professionally that she finally understood the nuances that she received because of her culture and ethnicity. Through acting classes, workshops, and productions, Carpio entered a necessary self-discovery in which she came to appreciate, love, and take pride in her Filipino heritage. 



Marissa is currently a working actress in New York City. If you would like to know more about her, please visit her Instagram @lecarpsicle.