Celebrating Black History Month

February 2, 2024

Black History Month SpeakerThe UIW community is proud to celebrate Black History Month with a series of events featuring students, faculty and community members. With an emphasis on recognizing history, cultures, legacies and the continuous impact Black individuals have across the nation, hosts and participants will recall their experiences and reflect on Black history and the ongoing pursuit of a more just society.

UIW’s Black History Month committee is contributed by Dr. Lisa Brown, assistant professor in the Dreeben School of Education, and Dr. Arturo Chavez, associate vice president for Mission and Ministry and Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Dr. Chavez shared, “This month, the UIW community is invited to reclaim the fullness of our history and understand how it has shaped our present challenges. Perhaps even more important, Black history is a source of hope that illuminates our future as we celebrate the victories and continue to work for racial justice in our times.” 

BHM march eventIn anticipation of Black History Month, University Mission & Ministry began hosting weekly “Pray and Act for Racial Justice” sessions every Friday at noon in January. Each week through the end of February, all students and employees are invited to learn about a different Black saint or leader, letting their legacies inspire them to remain active in the pursuit of racial justice as they pray for the strength to do so.

Dr. Brown officially kicked off the month’s events on Thursday, Feb. 1 with part one of a two-part book review of The Black Reparations Project: A Handbook for Racial Justice, to which she contributed as an author and scholar. In the book, she shares, “There is also a long tradition of dismemory campaigns: organized and systemic efforts to manipulate and distort the nation’s racial history (Darity and Mullen 2020, p. 173). Hence, it is crucial that American history instruction not neglect the contributions of Black Americans and that Black history be appreciated as coequal to the American history story.”


During the event hosted on X (Twitter) Spaces, participants were able to share in discussion with Dr. Brown and other distinguished scholars and researchers in an informal, adult education and community engagement environment. Part two of the event series will take place on Monday, Feb. 26.

Other upcoming events include a conversation with the youngest and first African American County Commissioner in the history of Bexar County, Tommy Calvert, hosted by the Lewis Center of the Americas on Thursday, Feb. 15. Time-honored events are also returning, such as the now annual spoken word workshop with speaker, actress and poet Jess Mahogany on Wednesday, Feb. 28.

Click here to see the full UIW Black History Month schedule of events .