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News Release


Ohio Wesleyan University Plans Black History Month Celebration

January 15, 2008

mZuri (top)
Na’im Akbar (bottom)
DELAWARE, OHIO – Ohio Wesleyan University will feature a month’s worth of special programming to celebrate the national observance of Black History Month throughout February. The programs, all free and open to the public, are designed to explore the past, understand the present, and define the future.

A highlight of the university’s Black History Month observance will be a four-part Unity Dialogue discussion series led by speaker and educator Gloria Long-Groves. She will hold each presentation at noon in the Benes Rooms of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave. Those attending the discussions are invited to bring a brown bag lunch.

Dates and topics for the Unity Dialogue series are:

  • Feb. 4, “Why Slavery Worked Then and Now”
  • Feb. 13, “The Noose and Other Images that Hurt”
  • Feb. 20, “How Far Have We Come and How Far Do We Have to Go?”
  • Feb. 25, “The New Agenda”

Additional events will include:

  • 8 p.m. Feb. 21 – Poetry Slam. The community is invited to perform original works, read a favorite poem, or just listen to the words of poets from throughout central Ohio. The event, hosted by Def Poetry Jam artist Dana Gilmore, will be held in the Bishop Café inside Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave.
  • 7 p.m. Feb. 26 – Ohio Wesleyan faculty, staff, and students will discuss “Still Unequal – The Disparities of Law and the Media.” The dialogue will be held in the Benes Rooms of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave.
  • 7:30 p.m. Feb. 27 – “The Fannie Lou Hamer Story by mZuri,” featuring actress, poet, and educator mZuri telling the story of Hamer, a civil rights activist and community leader. The presentation will be held in Room 312 of the R.W. Corns Building, 78 S. Sandusky St.
  • 7 p.m. Feb. 29 – Rafiki Wa Afrika’s Cultural Fest. This event, featuring dance, food, and costumes celebrating the African, African American, and Caribbean cultures, will help to raise funds for the university’s Ghana Cultural Immersion Mission Team. The event will be located in Chappelear Drama Center, 45 Rowland Ave.
  • 7:30 p.m. March 4 – “It’s Not Over Yet,” featuring internationally known author, historian, and scholar Na’im Akbar, Ph.D., of Florida State University. Touted by Essence Magazine as “one of the world’s pre-eminent psychologists and a pioneer in the development of an African-centered approach in modern psychology,” he will speak in Benes Room A of Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave. 

Ohio Wesleyan University is an undergraduate liberal arts college that transforms the lives of its students through a combination of rigorous academics, mentoring relationships, and real-world experiences. Featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” the private university’s 1,850 students come from 40 states and 45 countries. Visit www.owu.edu for more information.