ANN ARBOR, Mich. – Throughout February Washtenaw Community College is celebrating Black History Month with several free events open to the public.
Recognized since 1976, Black History Month highlights the influence and impacts of African Americans on the history of the United States.
Five events, to be held on Zoom, are scheduled at the Ann Arbor community college ranging from poetry and literature to Black history and genealogy.
“Black History Month is a time to celebrate Black excellence and history, raise awareness of current experiences, and most importantly a time to commemorate the debts endured by Black Americans that made a country of opportunity possible for all Americans to benefit from,” said WCC Dean of Student Access, Success, Equity, and Inclusion Dr. Eric Reed in a release.
Here’s a breakdown of what’s happening:
ONE LOVE: POETRY OPEN MIC: Thursday, 2-3 p.m.
Community members can listen to Washtenaw Community College students, faculty, staff and alumni during a virtual open mic featuring work from WCC’s ‘One Love’ online anthology.
H.P. JACOBS TO HBCU: Friday, 3-4 p.m.
Historian and Eastern Michigan University professor James Egge will discuss the impacts of Ypsilanti’s will H.P. Jacobs and the founding of Jackson State University. Alumni from historically Black colleges and universities are encouraged to join to share their experiences.
BLACK HISTORY AND STUDENT SUCCESS AT WCC: Wednesday, Feb. 23, 12:30-1:30 p.m.
Washtenaw Community College employees and alumni will share their inspiring experiences at the Ann Arbor college with participants.
BELL HOOKS: MEN, PRISON & A FEMINIST MOVEMENT: Friday, Feb. 25, 11 a.m.- noon
Activist Cozine Welch will discuss the actions of incarcerated men who used the lessons of activist Gloria Jean Watkins, widely known under the pen name bell hooks, and how her influence helped them to change themselves. The event will focus on the documentary “The Feminist on Cellblock Y.” Potential attendees are encouraged to watch the film before the event.
RESEARCHING YOUR AFRICAN-AMERICAN ANCESTORS: Wednesday, March 2, 2-3 p.m.
African-American Genealogy Association of Washtenaw County founder and WCC instructor Jean Winborn will teach participants how to research their ancestry and genealogy.