Is it Black History month?

Courtesy of NAACP

Black History month is dedicated to highlighting the accomplishments and milestones achieved by prominent African American pioneers.

As an African American student attending an historical university, students have become concerned that things that are not as relevant as our history are washing out our roots.

On the campus of Florida A&M University there seems to be an ongoing debate whether efforts have been put in place to properly commemorate Black History month.

Kendra Hazel, a fourth-year FAMU pre-physical therapy student from Washington, D.C., feels the university has failed with keeping the student population updated about black culture.

“Although this is the second week of Black History month, there hasn’t been much attention drawn to it,” Hazel said. “On campus I see propaganda for Valentine’s Day and Mardi Gras but no attention to Black History.”

Hazel added, that there should be daily history facts, images of former leaders, or other artifacts to pay homage to black ancestors.

LaDonna Carney, a fourth-year FAMU criminal justice student from Washington, D.C., believes Black History shouldn’t be constrained to just one month.  

“FAMU has the opportunity to advocate, celebrate, and highlight Black culture and accomplishments everyday,” Carney said. “So when February comes around, people are often expecting an extravaganza, because they are still in the mindset that 28 days is enough to celebrate our history.”

On the contrary, Nashid Madyun, director of the Meek-Eaton Southeastern Regional Black Archives, concluded that the campus has done a superb job at pulling together an array of activities for the entire FAMU to participate in.

“Black History Month is an opportunity to make sure all cultures are familiar with the contributions to society from African Americans. These are strengths to society and this campus is doing something very unique and special,” Madyun said.

Some have argued that it is not a matter of whether events are being held for Black History month, but it is more about informing yourself of what is happening around campus.

Madyun added that a lot of departments on FAMU’s campus have their own activities whether it is Science, College of Arts & Sciences, Humanities and of course the Black Archives. FAMU president Elmira Mangum asked that a committee put together a plan of action.

FAMU’s president, Elmira Mangum, requested that a committee be put in place to provide a collection of all the activities. The campus now has a calendar of activities and programs addressing aspects of African American history everyday of the month.

Black History should never be overlooked, even if it is the month of February. Both students and faculty should stay abreast on all aspects of Black culture.