African Love Week, an annual series of events created by SGA to bring students together in the spirit of love and unity, begins this week.
Fox Rich’s Power Party Tour kicked off the week Tuesday evening. Men and women attended separate empowering sessions on love and relationships in Perry Paige Auditorium. Various topics were discussed during the seminars to teach students how to treat each other and how to improve their relationships.
According to Paula Hill, the SGA secretary of academic affairs and organizer of the week, African Love Week began about three years ago and allows SGA to show its appreciation and love for the students.
Today is Men’s Appreciation Day, in which different organizations on campus will shower male students with gifts and food on the Set.
Thursday at noon, SGA and campus organizations will cater to the female students during Women’s Appreciation Day.
On Thursday evening, the Beta Nu Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity Inc., and SGA are hosting a seminar titled Sex and the City. Hill said the seminar will focus on the changing face of sex and relationships.
“The seminar will create a dialogue about what men and women want out of relationships and how the definition of relationships has changed over the years,” said Hill, a 21-year-old accounting student from Miami.
Friday is African Love Day and all students will receive gifts on the Set during the afternoon.
“We want the students to feel love. This week is for them, so we want them to enjoy it,” Hill said.
Sean Johnson, co-coordinator of the African Love Week Showcase, agreed.
“There is a lot of separation on campus and many people feel left out at times. This week is designed to bring people together,” said the 20-year-old Bio/Premed senator from Wethersfield, Conn.
The African Love Week Showcase is the main event and takes place Friday evening. It will be an evening comprised of entertainment and a dating auction. Various organizations will perform, along with individual student performers to enhance the event.
According to LaJoy Mercer, the coordinator of the showcase, campus organizations will auction off a member their organization who will go on a date with the highest bidder after the event.
“At the end of the night, the participants will go on dates in stretch limos and eat at the Heavenly Catering restaurant. The entire date is paid for by SGA,” said Monique Gillum, 18, a first year political science senator who helped coordinate the showcase.
Gillum is excited about the weeks of events because she is having the opportunity to help plan the showcase during her first year at FAMU.
“The events will showcase African-Americans in a different light and show students how to celebrate love, especially within the black community,” said Gillum, a native of Gainesville.
Mercer said the proceeds of the showcase, admission is $3, will go toward campus beautification and Relay for Life. Each year SGA chooses a project for campus beautification to give back to the campus.
Roshelle Rosemond, 23, was the previous coordinator of the showcase.
“We raised around $2,500 last year and the project for campus beautification was the fountain near the cafeteria,” said the fifth-year MBA student from Fort Lauderdale.
African Love Week ends on Valentine’s Day. Hill said SGA will deliver candy bags to the dorms and the Kappa Kappa Psi national honorary band fraternity will present students with singing grams.
Members of SGA believe that African Love Week correlates with both Black History Month and Valentine’s Day.
“I hope students will leave this week with a greater appreciation for love, which is something the community sometimes lacks,” Gillum said.
“I encourage everyone to participate in the various activities, because everyone has someone to love and appreciate,” Mercer said.
Tickets for the showcase go on sale today at the ticket booth and will be sold until the evening of the event.
Contact Ebonie Ledbetter at firstname.lastname@example.org.