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Black History Month at CSULB

The Office of Multicultural Affairs kicks off annual series of events for Black History Month.

The+African+Soul+International+Association+performed+at+the+Speakers+Platform+in+traditional+African+dress+to+celebrate+the+beginning+of+Black+History+Month+2%2F7.
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Black History Month at CSULB

The African Soul International Association performed at the Speakers Platform in traditional African dress to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month 2/7.

The African Soul International Association performed at the Speakers Platform in traditional African dress to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month 2/7.

Hunter Lee | Daily 49er

The African Soul International Association performed at the Speakers Platform in traditional African dress to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month 2/7.

Hunter Lee | Daily 49er

Hunter Lee | Daily 49er

The African Soul International Association performed at the Speakers Platform in traditional African dress to celebrate the beginning of Black History Month 2/7.

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The scent of home-cooking permeated the air around the Speakers Platform, and the banging of drums could be heard meters away, the percussion kicking off Black History Month at Cal State Long Beach Wednesday.

The month-long series of events, hosted by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, began at noon with dancing and chanting from the African Soul International Association. Students and faculty  stopped to observe the association as they moved around the platform in vibrant yellow and red African garb.

For the rest of the month, campus members can look forward to a menagerie of similar events including speakers, art installs and many activities to recognize the history and achievements of Black Americans. Here’s a rundown of the events:

Blackherstories

On Feb. 13 from noon to 1 p.m., there will be a networking event called “Blackherstories,” which will take place from 6 to 8 p.m. in the University Student Union Los Alamitos Bay Room. The event will showcase the beauty of black women with art pieces, poetry and other methods by providing a platform for these women to share their stories.

MLK Day of Service

The third annual Martin Luther King Jr. Day of Service will take place on Feb. 16 and will include an opportunity for students to volunteer for community service projects at various places throughout the city. The event will take place from 8:30 a.m to 3:30 p.m. and volunteers will meet up at the student union Southwest Terrace before carpooling to these places. Students must register to volunteer on BeachSync by Feb. 9.

Blackhistories

On the evening of Feb. 20, from 6 to 8 p.m., “Blackhistories” will take place in the Multicultural Center Conference Room, FO3-02. This event will mirror some of the same elements as “Blackherstories,” but will be geared toward men, giving them an opportunity to vent and express themselves.

“I think events like these are important for men, especially African American men, because it gives us a chance to express ourselves,” said Donge Tucker, a junior theatre major. “Getting things off your chest is important because it allows you to let go and most of the time you realize that you aren’t the only one going through those types of situations.”

MLK Celebration Day

The 19th annual Martin Luther King Jr. celebration will take place on Feb. 26 from noon to 2 p.m. in the University Student Union ballrooms. This event will include singers, dancers, speakers, poets and other types of artists. Refreshments will be served after the celebration.

“I find this event to be even more important because it’s already a struggle to go to school as a black student, now imagine going to college as a gay black student,” said Manny Chinnis, a sophomore communications major.

A Moment of Unity

To wrap up the month-long series of events, on Feb. 28, there will be an event called A Moment of Unity from 7 to 8:30 p.m. in the ballrooms. This event aims to facilitate dialogue and reflect on the highlights of “Blackhisstories” and “Blackherstories.”

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