Week marks black history

Michael Phillips
Staff Writer

In honor of Black History Month, the African American Student Alliance hosted Black Out Week, an annual tradition at the University of La Verne.

“Black Out Week is a time set aside to bring awareness to issues that affect the black community, whether its academics, workshops, or other issues,” said Corbin Henault, 20-year-old athletic training major.

The first event of the week was the painting of the rock, which took place at 10 p.m., Monday in front of Founders Hall. At the rock painting guests were welcomed with black wristbands that read “Black History Month Believe: Achieve Succeed.”

On Tuesday, a gender roles discussion titled “A Touch of Love” was hosted in the West Dining Room. The participants discussed the role gender plays in African American culture, society and relationships. Aside from the discussion, guests were able to create candy grams for Valentine’s Day.

Wednesday night s event ‘A Blast From the Past’ incurred a minor glitch. Due to check-in issues at West Dining Room, the event was moved to the Stu-Han lounge and started a bit late.

Nonetheless it led guests into a discussion of black cinema, particularly the 1988 Spike Lee film “School Daze.” “School Daze” is a musical-comedy film about African American education and Greek life.

“Discussing black cinema is important because since its Black History Month we need to honor all aspects of our past especially film.” said 23-year-old Ashley Joseph a graduate student in the educational and counseling masters program at ULV.

Toward the end of the discussion, someone asked why a Spike Lee film was a central part of the discussion.

“The first thing we think about in black education is Greek life, because it is the oldest tradition in black education,” said Courtney Williams, 24-year-old Master of Business Administration student.

Thursday night’s event was called “Right Road to Graduation.” It was held in the West Dining Room.

The program’s goal was to help students with academic advising, graduation goals, and choosing their majors, among other educational concerns.

Friday night signaled the end of Blackout week. AASA ended the week by hosting a bowling night at Chaparrel Lanes in San Dimas.

Black Out Week honors Black History Month, which started as a week-long event. It was established in 1926. Then in the 1940s it became a month-long tradition.

The goal of Black History Month, along with the goal of AASA’s Black Out Week event is to lend awareness about the contributions African Americans have made not only to American history but also world history.

In honor of Black History Month, the Rock was painted black with a fist on it symbolizing strength, unity and pride.

Michael Phillips can be reached at michael.phillips2@laverne.edu.

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