The start of February marks the beginning of Black History Month, which brings with it a plethora of events organized by the Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) for students to partake in on campus.
OMSA has prepared a calendar of seven events that highlight different aspects of Black history and culture.
Angelica Johnson, social work senior and lead coordinator for OMSA, has helped organize this year’s line up of events.
Johnson said her favorite part of the process has been working with other RSOs like Forever Red, Student Association and the Organization of Black Unity (OBU) to host events that teach and entertain attendees.
“What I have enjoyed most about organizing Black History Month is working with a great team to collaborate our events with both offices and organizations making them both fun and educational for the SVSU campus community,” she said. “[OBU] has been phenomenal over the years to help develop and create new and outstanding programs. It is exciting to see students join and participate in our events to learn more about the culture and ask questions.”
Johnson’s most anticipated event is the Black History 101 Mobile Museum, featuring important artifacts from Black history and a lecture from Dr. Khalid el-Hakim.
Originally scheduled for Feb. 3, the event was unfortunately postponed until March 17 due to inclement weather. Though the event will now take place after Black History Month, Johnson said it will still be an important learning experience for all.
“This is my favorite [event] as it is important to learn about the history of African culture and the hardships of things they had to go through,” she said. “I have learned about my own family from North Carolina that worked as slaves on a cotton farm to the new generation of still fighting to stop racism and advocating for social justice rights.”
Other events taking place this month include a fashion show, a Black alumni meet and greet and an intersectional women’s panel.
Johnson said this year’s celebrations are even more important given the national theme for the month is Black Health and Wellness.
“As part of my blood and culture, and institution, we celebrate and acknowledge the legacy of not only Black scholars and medical practitioners, but also other ways in which the black community has contributed to healthcare throughout the African diaspora,” she said.
Johnson said overall she hopes that attending events throughout the month helps students learn more about Black history and those who helped make it.
“In the [United States], the month-long spotlight during February is an opportunity for people to engage with Black histories, go beyond discussions of racism and slavery, and highlight Black leaders and accomplishments,” she said.