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Black History Month Celebration Goes Virtual

February 22, 2021

The Diversity Committee at Edison State Community College is hosting a virtual celebration of Black History Month. The event will begin on Monday, February 22, and run through Friday, February 26, with new and different activities and events to access throughout the week. All of the following virtual events are offered free of charge and accessible online by visiting

“While we’re holding a virtual event this year, we still have a fun week-long celebration planned for Black History Month,” said Marva Archibald, Diversity Committee Chairperson. “We invite all members of the community to go online and join us. There will be something for everybody.”

Monday, February 22

  • View readings from the Black History Month student essay contest winners. The theme of this year's essay contest was "Unsung American Heroes." Students based their essays on individuals who represent an unsung hero from Black history or someone in the community who embodies a hero's ideals from Black history. Winning first place in the essay competition was Sarah Beck of Sidney; second place was a tie between Maurizia Harvey of New Knoxville and Georgia Wetzel of New Madison; third place was Madelyn Smith of Quincy; and Honorable Mention went to Hunter Dues of Minster.

Monday, February 22 • 7 p.m.

  • View performance by renowned acrobatic group, Zuzu African Acrobats with a question-and-answer session following at 7:45 p.m. Watch as Zuzu African Acrobats, who were featured on America's Got Talent, perform traditional Kenyan acrobatic skills set to high energy beats.

Thursday, February 25

  • A student-led panel discussion entitled "Footprints of Japan, Liberia, and the Philippines at Edison State" will be pre-recorded for viewing. Students will share their account of immigrating to America, their expectations, and how they've adapted.

Thursday, February 25 • 6-7 p.m.

  • Dr. Timothy Askew will serve as this year's Black History Month guest speaker, providing a presentation about the song "Lift Every Voice and Sing." Dr. Askew was an NCEA Doctoral Fellow in the English Department at the University of South Florida. Pursuing an interdisciplinary degree in American Studies and focusing on American Literature and American Music, he received his Ph.D. degree at Emory University and has the distinction of being the first Ph.D. Marshal at the University. Dr. Askew was the Atlanta Public Library "Lift Every Voice and Sing" Celebration Speaker at Georgia State University and has been featured in the Atlanta Constitution and the Houston, Texas newspaper African American News for his research on the song. Dr. Askew will make this presentation via Zoom. 

    The Diversity Committee at Edison State Community College is committed to advancing the College’s academic mission and goals in the areas of diversity, equality, inclusion, and human rights by leading efforts to define, assess, and cultivate diversity as both an institutional value and an academic priority.

    The Black History Month events are sponsored, in part, by Edison State Community College, Park National Bank, and U.S. Bank. For more information, email Marva Archibald, Diversity Committee Chairperson.