The C-wing at Mohawk College was busier than usual Friday afternoon, as students filtered through the space to view one of Social Inc.’s Black History Month displays.
The move into February marks the start of Black History Month, a month dedicated to recognizing the accomplishments, achievements and overall impact Black people have in society worldwide. It is a time to reflect on how change-makers like Rosa Parks and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. paved the way then and how contemporary activists are making change now.
Mohawk College, in collaboration with Social Inc., has prepared a number of events and displays all over campus to celebrate Black History Month, including the McCurdy Nova Scotia Display. On loan from the Ontario Black History Society (OBHS), the four-panel display featuring places and people of historical significance in Black Canadian culture was set up in the C-wing common area Wednesday and Friday. Students and faculty were able to read about the religious and community lives of many Black Canadians.
Marco Felvus, coordinator of Social Inc., reflected on the importance of the yearly event.
“Black History Month is an opportunity for us to learn about the history of people who have been historically and are currently oppressed,” said Felvus. “I think it’s a great opportunity for white people to realize the privileges that we have in our society.”
“We have a pretty wide spectrum of events happening on campus this month,” continued Felvus. “We have more historically-significant pieces like the displays, but also more light and fun events like Black Power Hour, which celebrates music from Black artists.”
Multiple students were browsing through the panels in C-wing on Friday, reading the historical accounts collected by the OBHS.
“I like when the school does things like this because I feel I have so much more to learn,” said Mohawk College Finance student Taylor Alber. “Reading these panels I learned things I probably never would have known otherwise.”
Felvus hopes students will gain a new appreciation for the Black community, not just in February but year-round.
Black History Month events will continue around campus for the remainder of the month, including a Drag Queen Show, and a performance by the Hamilton Youth Steel Orchestra. For more information visit the Mohawk College website.