Newman University Student Life has been busy planning several activities to help celebrate Black History Month.
The national annual tradition, also known as African American History Month, shifted from a week of recognition to a monthlong celebration in 1976 and has served as a time of reflection, education and celebration ever since.
Joseph Shepard, director of multicultural engagement and campus life, along with his team, Joshua Woods and Naria Hall, have created a schedule of activities for the month of February.
From a social media challenge to help educate the Newman community on influential leaders to partnering with community organizations in an effort to provide historical educational opportunities for students, staff and faculty, the month of February promises to be both fun and educational for the Newman community.
BLACK HISTORY MONTH SCHEDULE:
Feb. 5 | 8:30 a.m. | Fugate Student Center — Jet Friday featuring Black-owned business Wichita Cheesecake Company: During Jet Friday, a limited supply of cheesecakes will be provided for students. Wichita Cheesecake Company founder and owner Mark Daniels will be available to meet and greet students, faculty and staff as well as discuss experiences of being a Black business owner.
Feb. 9 | 5 p.m. | Dugan-Gorges Conference Center — The Kansas African American Museum Trailblazers Awards Watch Party: The Division of Student Affairs is partnering with The Kansas African American Museum to host a watch night party so students, faculty and staff can watch the 2020 Kansas African American Museum Trailblazers Gala. The event highlights prominent Black Kansas leaders who have made significant contributions to not only our state but also our country.
Feb. 10 | 5 p.m. | Virtual Poetry Night: Poet Christopher “Blk Sol” Hill will share poetry that touches on the Black Lives Matter movement and other topics surrounding Black History Month.
Feb. 15 | “Quote Me” Social Media Challenge: Students will find a quote from an African American influencer that inspires them to push forward for the rest of this semester and post on social media. Since COVID hit, there has been an extra need for more positivity, so this event is meant to educate as well as uplift the university community. Students will be asked to use the #QuoteMeNU when posting on social media.
Feb. 17 | Jet Table Talk | Sister Tarcisia Roths, ASC, Alumni Center: The Diversity Round Table Ambassadors will hold their monthly Jet Table Talk, which encourages those from different backgrounds to engage in constructive dialogue in hopes of viewing the world through a different lens.
Feb. 24 |6 p.m. |The Kansas African American Museum: Students, faculty and staff will have the opportunity to tour The Kansas African American Museum and view the current art exhibit for free. Attendees will hear from Denise Sherman, TKAAM executive director, and learn more about the museum’s history and that of African American history in Kansas.
Feb. 26 | 6:30 p.m. | Virtual Discussion — Bonnets and Durags: Director of Multicultural Engagement Joseph Shepard will lead a conversation on Black culture and the Black experience with Newman University students and Wichita community members. Members of the African American/Black community are asked to wear their bonnets and durags, which are significant cultural hair garb in the African American community.