February is designated as Black History Month, honoring the triumphs and struggles of African Americans throughout U.S History. It gives an opportunity for many Americans from all different cultures and ethnicities to learn new details of the nation’s history. All of the nation’s history.
As the saying goes, “black history is American history“, said Project 21 member Darryn Dutch Martin, who is one of the members of the Project 21 black leadership network. But more specifically it gives an opportunity for white people to understand the long history of African Americans and the struggles that they had to endure to get where they are today.
Many colleges across the world including Cabrini University have really focused on diversity, allowing students to speak from their perspectives and learn from another.
Cabrini University celebrates Black History Month with a month- long series of discussions and activities that showcases black talent and culture, while also gathering the community to examine Black History, it’s champions for justice, and its connections to the present day. This bringing in more awareness for the African American Culture.
“I am personally going into the field of teaching, to be able to bring awareness to my students, presenting a bio for a historical black figure, for each school day,” Hunter Cooper, sophomore education major, said. Cooper, 19, plans to use his platform in educational teaching to bring awareness for the young students coming up to learn about the true history of African Americans. He teaches grades pre-k – 3rd grade, and the reasoning behind showing them important historical figures that paved the way for African American history was to bring awareness to them at a young age. “I think it’s important to teach them at a young age and show them the right way to treat others with respect, and equally through all ethnicities and cultures,” Cooper said.
Another Cabrini white male student had similar thoughts on the idea of celebrating black history month.
“The biggest thing for white people to bring awareness to black history month is surrounding themselves with African Americans and listening to their perspectives,” David Tilton, a junior education major, said. “I have a lot of friends that are African American, and so I constantly listen to their stories every day to really make them valued, appreciated, and safe,” Tilton said.
When you compare today’s society now to how things were back then, there is a major difference to how African Americans were treated during the slavery days, as they were constantly being oppressed because of the color of their skin. Now, diversity is welcomed in schools and workplaces.
As there was once a time period back in the 1950’s and 60’s that African Americans couldn’t even be in the same room with white people. Students like Hunter Cooper and David Tilton are examples of what Cabrini University’s message is all about, as far as their focus on creating a community where everyone is treated equally with respect and dignity.
“Understanding American History is one of the most powerful tools we have to combat the inequities of the present moment,” said Jose Rodriguez, Chief Diversity Officer.