Resident Assistants (RAs) Ashley Horn ‘18, Dasia Edwards ‘18, Jarena Griffin ‘17, and Sardrick Owusu ‘19 organized the “Black Thought” event held on Tuesday, Feb. 28 as part of Black History Month celebration.
The program, an open discussion forum, offered black students from different backgrounds the opportunity to share their experiences with others on campus and foster a growing awareness of the black identity. The event also included international students to share their experiences in the United States in comparison to their home countries.
Being the first to directly include student speakers, “Black Thought” aims to broaden the conversation around the discrimination and prejudices that black students experience. The program tackles the students’ perspectives on the recent Black Lives Matter movement and their thoughts on being a minority at predominantly white institutions such as Wilson.
Edwards commented, “I hope this encourages students to speak up without being judged and gives them the chance to educate their friends and people surrounding them.”
Jahniya Wesley ’17, who participated in the program, added, “I think it’s important to educate non-African American students on what it’s like to be black in today’s society. I’d like to help address some of the ignorance I see on campus.”
Also in honor of Black History Month, Wilson invited Reverend Charles Griffin, an Itinerant Elder in the African Methodist Episcopal Church, on Feb. 28, to lead the Common Hour titled, “A Healthy Conversation about Racial Injustice and What Are You Going to Do About It?”
The talk addressed the current social climate of the country, in which it appears to be more divided than ever, in hopes to foster a better understanding of the problems involving race and ethnicity and to develop mutual respect for people from different walks of life.
Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by black Americans and a time for recognizing the central role of African Americans in U.S. history. As Wilson students celebrate this month, take a moment to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout the past and the present.