Black History Month Events & Activities | Wittenberg University

Black History Month Events & Activities

Throughout the month of February and thanks to the efforts of the University’s William A. McClain Center for Diversity, Wittenberg will host numerous events and activities as part of its robust Black History Month programming series.

Black History Month

All Month:

Black History Month Book Display, Thomas Library - A selection of recent books on a variety of topics relevant to Black History Month will be on display in the lobby of Thomas Library and available for checkout.

Week of Feb. 22-27:

  • Feb. 22: WW Series, 7:30 p.m. – Wittenberg and Wilmington will present Black History Month keynote speaker Odell Bizzell, leadership & diversity skills expert, on “What Would Dr. King & Malcolm X Teach in 2021?” For information or link: email witherspoonc@wittenberg.edu
  • Feb. 23: Paris is Burning Watch Party & Discussion, 7-9 p.m., Founders – Hosted by Chandler Mueller, area coordinator, Wittenberg University Residence Life.
  • Feb. 24: Paris is Burning Watch Party & Discussion, noon to 2 p.m., Founders – Hosted by Chandler Mueller, area coordinator, Wittenberg University Residence Life.
  • Feb. 26: Black History Quiz Night – Hosted by the McClain Center for Diversity and the Hagen Center, the event will take place in room 105 of the Joseph C. Shouvlin Center. Group 1 will be from 7 to 7:45 p.m. followed by group 2 from 8 to 8:45 p.m. Contact @wittdiversity on Instagram or email witherspoonc@wittenberg.edu to sign up.
  • Feb. 27: Minds like Mine: A Mental Health Seminar, 1-4 p.m., Blair Hall - Hosted by the McClain Center for Diversity, guest speaker will be Ebone’ Ross of the Clinical Mental Health Graduate Student - Mountain Comprehensive Care Center. Contact @wittdiversity on Instagram or email witherspoonc@wittenberg.edu to sign up.
  • Feb. 27: CBS: DA BLOCK Party, 5 p.m. – Campus-wide event with Student Involvement on Alumni Way.

Past Events:

  • Feb. 8: Sister Circle Talks, 6 p.m. - Featuring Denisha Porter, MPH, director of All-In Cincinnati Equity Coalition, and titled “The Journey of a Public Health Champion.”
  • Feb. 9: FYS Lecture, 12 to 12:50 p.m. – Featuring Zakiyyah Iman Jackson, assistant professor of English at the University of Southern California, and titled “Architectures of the Flesh.”
  • Feb. 9: NO! documentary viewing, 7:30 p.m., Bayley Auditorium – Hosted by the Womyn’s Center, NO! is a 2006-released Ford Foundation-funded, groundbreaking film about intra-racial rape, accountability, and healing in Black communities. Produced, written, and directed over a period of 12 years by child sexual abuse and adult rape survivor Aishah Shahidah Simmons, this internationally acclaimed, award-winning film also explores how rape is used as a weapon of homophobia.
  • Feb. 10: McClain Brotherhood Series, 7:30 p.m. - Featuring Mr. Steve Stephens, Bowie State University, speaking on the topic of “Tap in With Me Bro.”
  • Feb. 11: “Keeping It Professional” panel discussion, 6 p.m. – Hosted by the McClain Center for Diversity and CBS, this panel will highlight the experiences of African Americans in the professional world, specifically our Wittenberg Black staff and faculty. The goal of the panel is to help students gain a sense of belonging and comfort from the representation found on campus and to learn from the experiences of panelists as they prepare for the workforce.
  • Feb. 11: The Movement/Dialogues On Diversity, 7:30 p.m. – Brave theater that moves people to embrace cultural differences will be hosted by Wilmington College. Through both the comedic and poignant, the show’s characters tell of the great struggles and of the challenges ahead. From the “Black Power 60’s”, to the “Blaxploitation 70’s”, into the “Cosby 80’s” and through the so-called “Post Racial” new millennia, "The Movement" is a survey of the best and sometimes worst of the African-American experience.
  • Feb. 12: Tri-University’s OMI Speaker Series Sister II Sister, 6:30 p.m. – Hosted by Wittenberg, Murray State, and Wilmington College, this talk will feature Corrine J. (CJ) Witherspoon, director of the William A. McClain Center for Diversity at Wittenberg University, on the topic “From Harriet Tubman to Kamala Harris...The Black Women's Journey Through Leadership.”
  • Feb. 16: Barbershop Talk: A Trip Down Alumni Way, 6 p.m. - Hosted by the McClain Center for Diversity, this panel discussion will feature alumni Shakeer Abdullah ’99 from Clayton State University, Adam Brown ’14 from ClinArk, Dorian Hunter ’18 from of the Springfield NAACP, Karlos Marshall ’13 and Moses Mbeseha ’13 of The Conscious Connect, as well as Paris Hilliard, Wittenberg track and field coach, discussing the past, present, and future of their journeys.
  • Feb. 17: WW Series, 6:30 p.m. – Wittenberg and Wilmington will present Black History Month keynote speaker Dr. D. Akil Houston, of Ohio University, talking about “Hip-Hop & Student Activism.”
  • Feb. 18: CBS for the Culture: Black Hair Trivia, 7:30 p.m. - Join CBS for Black Hair trivia and history. Prizes will be given!
  • Feb. 19: Tri-University’s Athletics, Academics, & Advancement, 6:30 p.m. – Hosted by Murray State, Wilmington, and Wittenberg, the talk will feature speaker, Dr. Kelvin King, of Lawson State Community College.

Black History Month calendar sponsors include the McClain Center for Diversity, AIA, Concerned Black Students, the Womyn’s Center, Residence Life, Tri-University, Shades of Pearl, and Student Involvement.

About the McClain Center for Diversity
The refurbished William A. McClain Center for Diversity, located at 834 Woodlawn Avenue on campus, is named for the groundbreaking Cincinnati-based attorney and member of Wittenberg’s class of 1934. One of the most respected, trailblazing attorneys in the nation, McClain received numerous honors during his illustrious career, including the Ellis Island Medal of Honor, which recognizes the achievements of outstanding ethnic Americans and their contributions to America. McClain, who also earned the Wittenberg Medal of Honor, passed away in February 2014 at the age of 101. Corinne Witherspoon was named the center’s first director in 2020.

About Black History Month
Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing their central role in U.S. history. Also known as African American History Month, the event grew out of “Negro History Week,” the brainchild of noted historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month. Other countries around the world, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating Black history. Source- History.com

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