Student center

Black Student Center turns 5 during Black Excellence Month

In the United States, February is Black History Month.

At Cal State San Marcos, it’s Black Excellence Month.

For John W. Rawlins III, director of the Black Student Center, the difference is more than semantic. This means that black history should be recognized throughout the year, while February is set aside for a celebration of black excellence and achievement.

And this year represents an important occasion for celebration, as the Black Student Center marks the fifth anniversary of its opening in 2017.

The theme for this Black Excellence Month is “Here We Are: The Power of Voice and Visibility”.

Here are some ways the CSUSM and Black Student Center will celebrate the month.

Black Excellence Month Virtual Opening Ceremony

February 1, noon, Zoom event

Our celebration begins with words of welcome and reflections from members of the campus community. Zoom link here.

Civic Documentary Screening Party: ‘Good Trouble’

February 8, 5 p.m., USU Amphitheater

Engage in good business through citizen action! Watch the movie “John Lewis: Good Trouble” with the CSUSM community. Create your own civic action swag and learn to take action on and off campus by connecting with local student and civic organizations. This dynamic event is open to all and aims to inspire citizen action. Join us for an evening of live music, performances, a short film, and a call to civic action leading up to the César Chávez Day of Service. Learn more about the event and RSVP here.

Black Excellence Resource Fair

February 10, noon, USU Arcade

The Black Excellence Resource Fair is a formal introduction to the many resources and initiatives available to the Black student community. It will allow students, faculty, and staff to network and make connections with CSUSM’s Black clubs, organizations, and initiatives.

Lead like Beyoncé

February 15, noon, Zoom event

Learn to lead with passion like Beyoncé by channeling your inner diva and learning skills to become an effective leader. Join the Black Student Center and the Tukwut Leadership Circle to explore various leadership styles, characteristics and traits, and create your own leadership philosophy inspired by Queen Bey herself! Zoom link here.

BSU Black Hair Salon

February 15, 6 p.m., USU Ballroom

The Black Hair Show is a perfect opportunity for stylists to get out there and educate other members of the black community on the techniques of creating hair styles for different black hair types. The stylists will provide different suggestions for hair products that the public can use on natural or protective hairstyles. This event is a great way to promote black excellence and to remember that all black hair is exceptional and beautiful in its own way.

Black Fishing Discussion

Feb. 16, 1 p.m., Black Student Center (also virtual)

We like to celebrate our own beauty. Some people are comfortable in their own skin while others may choose to alter their appearance with makeup and plastic surgery. But when we look too much like someone else, where do we draw the line? How do we contribute to cultural appropriation? Join the BSC and the Gender Equity Center in a discussion of pop culture blackfishing and uncover its unfortunate roots in blackface history. Black is beautiful. Help us elevate the beauty and culture of black men and women in an effort to discourage the prevalence of black fishing. Zoom link here.

In My Own Words: What My Black Excellence Looks Like

February 17, noon, Black Student Center

Join us for a discussion on the various ways we all celebrate Black Excellence Month. This event will be a panel where Black-identifying people with diverse backgrounds and other intersecting identities will talk about how they celebrate and why Black Excellence Month means to them.

Collaboration between the Circle of Sisters and the Alliance of Fraternity

February 24, noon, Black Student Center

Join the Circle of Sisters and Brotherhood Alliance groups in a wholesome conversation about black love and how these groups present and support each other.

BSC Fifth Anniversary Celebration/Symposium

February 26, 10 a.m., USU Ballroom

The BSC celebrates its 5th anniversary! Join us as we celebrate with the CSUSM community and witness the unveiling of the highly anticipated Black Student Center Oral History Project.

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