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The Aquilian

The Aquilian

    Students have numerous opportunities to celebrate Black History Month virtually

    Each+year+a+guest+speaker+comes+to+talk+to+Gonzaga+students+about+Black+History+Month%3B+this+years+speaker+was+Dr.+Eddie+Moore.+%28Photo+from+eddiemoorejr.com%29
    Each year a guest speaker comes to talk to Gonzaga students about Black History Month; this year’s speaker was Dr. Eddie Moore. (Photo from eddiemoorejr.com)

    Due to the virtual and hybrid classes, opportunities to celebrate important events on campus have been extremely limited. However, with the organization of some Gonzaga students and faculty, celebrating Black History Month as a community over Zoom was made possible.

    On Wednesday, Feb. 4 , a Zoom meeting was held to celebrate and kick off Black History Month, allowing students to participate and learn more about the importance of this month from keynote speaker, Dr. Eddie Moore, and other virtual activities. Labeled one of the top speakers and educators on the issue of comprehensive diversity, Dr. Moore spoke about why it is important to commemorate Black History Month. Members of the Poets and Writers Club entertained and gave an educational perspective of what it means to be black in America.

    “I think we have done a great job in using the technology we have access to, to organize an online Black History Month assembly for all students to attend virtually,” said Mr. Devon Leary, director of diversity.

    Similar to how classes have been held for the past few months, Mr. Leary, with the help of the Onyx Club, organized the school-wide Zoom meeting in celebration of Black History Month for all students to participate in on Feb. 3. For freshmen who still haven’t had the full Gonzaga experience, as well as seniors who have had to finish their high school experience in self-isolation, this assembly served as a chance to bring the entire community together for a wholesome and educational experience.

    Members from The Gonzaga Poets and Writers Club read poems dedicated to Black History Month at the virtual assembly. (Photo from gonzaga.org)

    “With social restrictions put in place because of the pandemic, planning the Black History Month Assembly for students to participate in has been more difficult than normal, but we have made sure to prioritize this important event for students to be a part of,” Mr. Leary said.

    Gonzaga’s Black History Month Assembly was a positive way for the community to celebrate an important month and raise awareness for the experiences that Black people, including Gonzaga students, deal with in the United States. Similar to last year’s Black History Month, there will be multiple ways for students to engage in the celebration of this important month either through listening to a speaker or sharing experiences in the form of poetry. With many days left in the month of February, Mr. Leary has scheduled various upcoming opportunities for students to celebrate Black History Month virtually. 

    “In addition to the assembly, we will continue to celebrate Black History Month with a variety of upcoming events such as a virtual screening of  Good Trouble” a documentary about the life of Congressman John Lewis [that aired] Thursday, Feb. 11 at 4 p.m.,” Mr. Leary said.

    These events allow for students whose lives have been consumed by the social restrictions to engage in activities alongside their Gonzaga brothers.

    “I find it important that we continue to celebrate Black History Month because these recent months in lockdown have been especially divisive and distant and have really separated the country, as well as Gonzaga’s community as a whole,” Mr. Leary said.

    With the extreme social restrictions put in place early last year, many students have not been able to participate in school-wide activities that enhance their high school experience. This assembly was a great way for students who miss the feeling of being a part of the Gonzaga community to feel more connected through the celebration of such an important event.

    “I think it is great that the Onyx Club with the help of Mr. Leary was able to organize an assembly to take the place of classes for the day because it gives opportunity for us to be together again like we were before Covid,” said Matthew Gately, senior.

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