By Tara DeLorenzo
In an effort to raise awareness of both the history and culture of African Americans, the Black Student Union (BSU) and the Office of Multicultural Affairs have joined forces to create a diverse array of events for students to attend.
These programs range from competitions, keynote speakers, a jeopardy game, and food competitions. On Feb. 10, they had an African Dance Class led by Egun Omode Shule, an African-cultured school in Trenton. With the various activities, it seems that there is an event for students of all types.
“We have so many diverse cultures [at Rider], and they like so many different things,” said Pamela Pruitt, director of the Office of Multicultural Affairs. “Black Student Union would like to bring awareness about the African American experience and history. It’s important to have different events reach people in other ways. The variety is there to bring awareness to people who like different things. It doesn’t have to be just African American people — it’s all people.”
The next events will be taking place on Feb. 12: Black History Jeopardy will be taking place at 7 p.m., and #BlackLivesMatter will be at 11:30 a.m. Both events will take place in the Mercer Room.
Black History Jeopardy will be testing student teams about historic events, quotes, etc. The game will include two rounds of regular jeopardy, as well as double jeopardy. Prizes will be awarded to the winning team.
#BlackLivesMatter will be a discussion-based program, open to both students and faculty. It will address the portrayal of African Americans – more specifically, it focuses on that representation during the decision-making process of grand juries, especially in relation to recent racially charged incidents in Staten Island and in Ferguson, Mo. Faculty from the departments of criminal justice, sociology, psychology and political science will all be involved in the forum to add their ideas and enhance the discussion.
President of the BSU and junior biology major, Evelyn Campbell, is eager to see how students react to the events.
“When it comes to the #BlackLivesMatter event, I’m very excited for the one-on-one dialogue students will be able to have with faculty and the enlightenment that the discussion will bring,” she said. “For the Black History Jeopardy, I am excited to see what teams know the most black history, as well the education the program will bring.”
More information about the Black History Month events can be found online at www.rider.edu/black-history-month.
Printed in the 2/11/15 edition.