Texas A&M University-Kingsville

University Committee Schedules Events for Black History Month

KINGSVILLE - February 01, 2010

Contact: Julie Navejar
julie.navejar@tamuk.edu or 361.593.2590

The Black Heritage Committee at Texas A&M University-Kingsville has planned many events to showcase Black History Month in February. The activities will kick off Friday, Feb. 5, with a step show and conclude Monday, March 1, with a slam poetry show and the annual banquet.

To make the campus aware of Black History Month, students will tie large ribbons around the trees on University Boulevard and around College Hall in the traditional colors of the month—black, red and green.

The Kick-off Step Show will be held at 6 p.m. Feb. 5, in ballroom A of the Memorial Student Union Building. In addition to the step show, Dr. Mateen A. Diop, alumnus and principal of Herman Hirsch Elementary School in the San Antonio Independent School District, will speak. Diop is a member of one of the university’s newest fraternities, Omega Psi Phi, which is sponsoring the kick-off event.

Diop recently earned his doctorate in educational leadership from Texas A&M-Kingsville. He also earned his master’s degree in educational administration from A&M-Kingsville and his bachelor’s degree in history and kinesiology from University of Incarnate Word.

After serving eight years in the United States Air Force, Diop began working for the San Antonio ISD first as a middle school teacher. He worked his way up serving as dean of instruction and assistant principal before taking his present principal position in 2006.

Area winners of a poster contest sponsored in Kingsville by Communities in Schools will be announced at halftime of the women’s basketball game at 4 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 6, when the Javelinas host Abilene Christian.

The art of Kingsville artist Betty Houston will be on display Monday through Friday, Feb. 8-12, in the first floor lobby of the Jernigan Library. Houston is a native of Orange Grove. She has a bachelor’s degree in psychology/sociology and her elementary education certification from Texas A&I University and her master’s degree in art from Texas A&M-Kingsville.

Houston is currently employed by the Kingsville Independent School District. She has three children. Portraits are her specialty. “The face is the pathway to the soul,” she said.

Two faculty members from the department of psychology and sociology will present a Brown Bag Lecture at noon Wednesday, Feb. 10, in the Alumni Room of Honor in the Memorial Student Union Building. Dr. Vincent Louis, assistant professor, and Dr. Don Daughtry, associate professor, will present Evolution of African-American Media Images. The presentation will trace the historical development regarding the treatment and presentation of African-Americans in media outlets, including entertainment and news outlets. The focus also will include the manner in which these images influence social perceptions and attitudes. Those attending this lecture may bring their lunch. Drinks will be provided.

A cultural group from the Houston area will be at A&M-Kingsville at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 16, in Jones Auditorium to present Sankofa: A Global Reunion. During the event, the Most Rev. Dr. Gideon Adjei, Archbishop of Ghana, will present the keynote address. He will be joined by cultural dancers and singers to complete the program of diversity.

Sankofa is an Akan word that means “reaching back to one’s origins to understand the purpose of one’s existence.” Adjei is a spiritual leader and teacher in Houston who promotes cross-cultural values through outreach, personal interaction and ministry.

A Black History Month Reader’s Theatre will be held at 6:30 p.m. Friday, Feb. 19, in the Little Theatre. Students in the communication/theatre arts department will read poetry and other pieces suitable for all ages.

The university community will take part in a nationwide event, the National African American Read-In at noon, Monday, Feb. 22, in the courtyard of the Memorial Student Union Building. This is an event sponsored by the National Council of Teachers of English and locally by Brian Worrall and Michael Verderber, lecturers in the language and literature department.  Members of the university community will read or act out passages written by African-American writers.

The Black Heritage Committee will be joined by the Campus Activities Board in sponsoring the movie Good Hair at 7 p.m. Friday, Feb. 26, in the Little Theatre. Good Hair is a documentary where Chris Rock explores the wonders of African-American hairstyles. It is rated PG-13. Popcorn will be provided.

The two groups again will sponsor The Dynamic Duo, National Slam Poet Champions from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday, March 1, in the mall area of the Memorial Student Union Building. Poets Panama Soweto and Ken Arkind will bring their high energy performance to South Texas.

The final event that brings Black History Month to a close is the annual Black Heritage Awareness Banquet at 6 p.m. Monday, March 1, in the Grand Ballroom of the Memorial Student Union Building. Tickets will be $10 and they will be available at the information desk of the Memorial Student Union Building. The keynote speaker is Gloria Smith, an alumnus and motivational speaker.

For more information on the Black History Month events, call 361-593-2760.

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