Black History Month provides diversity education to campus

Tanya Marsh

Tanya Marsh

Soul food. Spoken word. Step and drill.

These events and more are entertaining and informing community members during the celebration of Black History Month.

Education is the main focus, said Rozhyer Aware, program advisor for Multicultural Affairs.

“That’s what it’s all about – to learn and try something,” she said. “Once we can educate, then things fall into place.”

Darquie Taybior, a senior from Liberia, said he agrees people need to increase their understanding of other cultures.”

“I think [Black History Month] is very important because looking at the Brookings community there isn’t very much diversity,” Taybior, president of the Black Student Alliance (BSA), said. “When people go out from here, they’re going to experience huge culture shock.”

To prevent that shock, Taybior wants to give people a glimpse of black culture. He said the Black History Month does just that.

“[These events] bring people into our home pretty much. That’s why, when they come to our program, they’re going to have a taste of what we’re about.”

The Feb. 8 Dining Services offering of soul food was a beginning to that, Taybior said.

“One of the first ways you can get people into your culture is to let them sample your cuisine,” he said.

The Step and Drill Show Saturday night, Feb. 12, also showed the community about black culture, he said.

“With them coming, they see how we like to dance. We like hip hop and music and step shows,” Taybior said.

Junior Marvin A. Bediako, treasurer of BSA, said he appreciates Black History Month as a chance to showcase his culture.

“It’s a chance to bring it out and say ‘this is us,’ ” he said, adding that many people on campus don’t associate with minorities.

“During the school year, from class, they only know our name. We want them to know us, what we do. That’s why we went out there and did the step, that’s why we have events – to say ‘this is us.’ “

Aware would like to see cross-cultural relationships outside the classroom.

“People don’t step out of their bubble,” she said.

Taybior agreed that the community could reach out more.

“Don’t stare at people like fish in a fishbowl,” he suggested. “If you see [minorities] out there, talk to them.”

SDSU’s active BSA is helping educate people, he said.

“We decided to take it into our hands. We cannot stand by and watch our culture fade away,” he said.

Upcoming Black History Month events include black comedian “Big” Sean Larkins on Wednesday, Feb. 16, and a celebration of art and folk music with Deidre McCalla on Wednesday, Feb. 23.

#1.885377:1479912312.jpg:BSA.jpg:Members of the SDSU Black Student Alliance first performed at Saturday night´s Step and Drill Show to celebrate Black History Month. They are (from left): Marvin Bediako of Ghana, Hanna Ukbazghi of Eritvea, Yoshi Belayneh of Ethiopia, Patricia Davis of Haiti, Darquie Taybior of Liberia and Aminata Sagdoune of Niger.: