Black History Month event focuses on voting

Faculty and students gather to celebrate Black History Month event Wednesday. Photo by Deanna McClary

Florida A&M held its annual Celebration and Observance of Black History Month on Wednesday. This year’s theme was titled African Americans and Voting.

More than 40 people came to the Lawson Center to learn about the importance of college students voting.

The Black History Month event was put together by a professor in the department of Health, Physical Education and Recreation, who said it was important for everyone to come out and learn the history of African Americans voting.

FAMU professor Maria Okeke explained why it was important for African Americans to attend the event.

“Sometimes we lose the essence of what black history is all about and I want them to always know that black history is celebrated every single day of our lives,” she said. “To know their history is a part of their heritage and is the only way to look to a brighter future.”

The purpose of the event was to showcase the importance of taking the initiative to vote because it helps prevent elections from being left to chance. Throughout the event, faculty and students learned the importance of African Americans voting, the reasons why people do not vote and the benefits of voting.

Judge Andrew Dixon III, the keynote speaker at the Black History Month event, believes it’s important for students to know the power and history behind voting.

“The importance of voting has always been essential to me and giving what people have gone through just to make sure we have that right to vote, it was only right to press upon people coming behind me to really understand that people have died for this and not let it go over their heads,” Dixon said.

Dixon hopes that his speech resonated and that FAMU students will take voting seriously as the primary and general election approach.

The Celebration and Observance of Black History Month event was closed out with special performances, such as, dancing, poetry and a fashion show.

Armonie Mack, a junior general health student, said she enjoyed the event.

“I was satisfied with today’s event. This event just exemplifies black excellence and it was important for us to be here to know about our rich history, our ancestors, how far we have come over time and the importance of voting,” Mack said.