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Like many 17-year-olds, Aniya Wolf was looking forward to her junior prom.

The Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, high school student was looking forward to dancing the night away with her best friends and classmates at the May 6, 2016, formal. Aniya, who has always preferred pants to dresses, even purchased a new suit with her mom for the special occasion.


Aniya on the day of her prom. Image via ABC News/YouTube.

But things went south when administrators from her Catholic high school, Bishop McDevitt, heard Aniya was planning to wear a suit to the dance.

The school informed Aniya and her mother that if she chose to wear the suit, she would be asked to leave. The conversations and messages, which took place just hours before prom, mentioned that the dress code was clearly stated in a previous note to parents. However, Aniya's mother, Carolyn Wolf, said the dress code never explicitly stated girls had to wear dresses.

Aniya reading over the e-mail and dress code from her school. Image via ABC News/YouTube.

Carolyn even sat down with the principal that afternoon, just to see if anything else could be done. And short of making her daughter wear a dress, there wasn't.

"I can't put a dress on her any more than I could put a dress on any of my sons," Carolyn told Today. "That's not who she is."

With the dance rapidly approaching, Aniya decided to go for it and attend prom anyway. She barely made it past the ticket line before she was asked to leave by school officials who went as far as threatening to call the police.

The experience was painful and embarrassing for the teen.

"I felt humiliated, getting kicked out of prom," she told Today. "I wasn't going to hurt anybody with a suit."

Aniya, who identifies as a lesbian, feels her school is singling her out because of her sexual orientation.

"It's saying, 'We don't want you in our prom. You're a freak of nature,'" she told Today.

Aniya after being asked to leave the dance. Image via ABC27 News.

It would be easy for Aniya to feel defeated, but people across the country have rallied behind her to show their support.

Women around the country donned suits and tuxedos and shared their photos using the hashtag #suitsforaniya.

Employees at Aniya's local chapter of the YWCA were some of the first to participate.

Double bassist Lauren Pierce showed off her dashing tux.

Professional soccer player Ashlyn Harris lent her voice to the effort.

And "It's Always Sunny In Philadelphia" creator Rob McElhenney even asked Aniya if she wanted a guest spot on the show.


But surely, one of the best reactions came from William Penn Senior High School.

Principal Brandon Carter invited Aniya and her date to the school's prom on May 21.

"We embrace all," he said in the invite.

It may not be the prom she had in mind, but hopefully it will be a fun, welcoming, night to remember.

Hear from Aniya and her mother about their experience in this short clip from ABC News.

Joy

Nurse turns inappropriate things men say in the delivery room into ‘inspirational’ art

"Can you move to the birthing ball so I can sleep in the bed?"

Holly the delivery nurse.

After working six years as a labor and delivery nurse Holly, 30, has heard a lot of inappropriate remarks made by men while their partners are in labor. “Sometimes the moms think it’s funny—and if they think it’s funny, then I’ll laugh with them,” Holly told TODAY Parents. “But if they get upset, I’ll try to be the buffer. I’ll change the subject.”

Some of the comments are so wrong that she did something creative with them by turning them into “inspirational” quotes and setting them to “A Thousand Miles” by Vanessa Carlton on TikTok.

“Some partners are hard to live up to!” she jokingly captioned the video.

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All images provided by Adewole Adamson

It begins with more inclusive conversations at a patient level

True

Adewole Adamson, MD, of the University of Texas, Austin, aims to create more equity in health care by gathering data from more diverse populations by using artificial intelligence (AI), a type of machine learning. Dr. Adamson’s work is funded by the American Cancer Society (ACS), an organization committed to advancing health equity through research priorities, programs and services for groups who have been marginalized.

Melanoma became a particular focus for Dr. Adamson after meeting Avery Smith, who lost his wife—a Black woman—to the deadly disease.

melanoma,  melanoma for dark skin Avery Smith (left) and Adamson (sidenote)

This personal encounter, coupled with multiple conversations with Black dermatology patients, drove Dr. Adamson to a concerning discovery: as advanced as AI is at detecting possible skin cancers, it is heavily biased.

To understand this bias, it helps to first know how AI works in the early detection of skin cancer, which Dr. Adamson explains in his paper for the New England Journal of Medicine (paywall). The process uses computers that rely on sets of accumulated data to learn what healthy or unhealthy skin looks like and then create an algorithm to predict diagnoses based on those data sets.

This process, known as supervised learning, could lead to huge benefits in preventive care.

After all, early detection is key to better outcomes. The problem is that the data sets don’t include enough information about darker skin tones. As Adamson put it, “everything is viewed through a ‘white lens.’”

“If you don’t teach the algorithm with a diverse set of images, then that algorithm won’t work out in the public that is diverse,” writes Adamson in a study he co-wrote with Smith (according to a story in The Atlantic). “So there’s risk, then, for people with skin of color to fall through the cracks.”

Tragically, Smith’s wife was diagnosed with melanoma too late and paid the ultimate price for it. And she was not an anomaly—though the disease is more common for White patients, Black cancer patients are far more likely to be diagnosed at later stages, causing a notable disparity in survival rates between non-Hispanics whites (90%) and non-Hispanic blacks (66%).

As a computer scientist, Smith suspected this racial bias and reached out to Adamson, hoping a Black dermatologist would have more diverse data sets. Though Adamson didn’t have what Smith was initially looking for, this realization ignited a personal mission to investigate and reduce disparities.

Now, Adamson uses the knowledge gained through his years of research to help advance the fight for health equity. To him, that means not only gaining a wider array of data sets, but also having more conversations with patients to understand how socioeconomic status impacts the level and efficiency of care.

“At the end of the day, what matters most is how we help patients at the patient level,” Adamson told Upworthy. “And how can you do that without knowing exactly what barriers they face?”

american cancer society, skin cacner treatment"What matters most is how we help patients at the patient level."https://www.kellydavidsonstudio.com/

The American Cancer Society believes everyone deserves a fair and just opportunity to prevent, find, treat, and survive cancer—regardless of how much money they make, the color of their skin, their sexual orientation, gender identity, their disability status, or where they live. Inclusive tools and resources on the Health Equity section of their website can be found here. For more information about skin cancer, visit cancer.org/skincancer.

The mesmerizing lost art of darning knit fabric.

For most of human history, people had to make their own clothing by hand, and sewing skills were subsequently passed down from generation to generation. Because clothing was so time-consuming and labor-intensive to make, people also had to know how to repair clothing items that got torn or damaged in some way.

The invention of sewing and knitting machines changed the way we acquire clothing, and the skills people used to possess have largely gone by the wayside. If we get a hole in a sock nowadays, we toss it and replace it. Most of us have no idea how to darn a sock or fix a hole in any knit fabric. It's far easier for us to replace than to repair.

But there are still some among us who do have the skills to repair clothing in a way that makes it look like the rip, tear or hole never happened, and to watch them do it is mesmerizing.

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Pop Culture

Artist uses AI to create ultra realistic portraits of celebrities who left us too soon

What would certain icons look like if nothing had happened to them?

Mercury would be 76 today.

Some icons have truly left this world too early. It’s a tragedy when anyone doesn’t make it to see old age, but when it happens to a well-known public figure, it’s like a bit of their art and legacy dies with them. What might Freddie Mercury have created if he were granted the gift of long life? Bruce Lee? Princess Diana?

Their futures might be mere musings of our imagination, but thanks to a lot of creativity (and a little tech) we can now get a glimpse into what these celebrities might have looked like when they were older.

Alper Yesiltas, an Istanbul-based lawyer and photographer, created a photography series titled “As If Nothing Happened,” which features eerily realistic portraits of long gone celebrities in their golden years. To make the images as real looking as possible, Yesiltas incorporated various photo editing programs such as Adobe Lightroom and VSCO, as well as the AI photo-enhancing software Remini.

“The hardest part of the creative process for me is making the image feel ‘real’ to me,” Yesiltas wrote about his passion project. “The moment I like the most is when I think the image in front of me looks as if it was taken by a photographer.”

Yesiltas’ meticulousness paid off, because the results are uncanny.

Along with each photo, Yesiltas writes a bittersweet message “wishing” how things might have gone differently … as if nothing happened.
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