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MIT celebrates Black History Month

By Sharon G. Price

February is nationally recognized as Black History Month, and MIT is celebrating with a variety of events including films, guest speakers and theatrical presentations.

Victoria D. Boyd '91, co-chair of the Black Student Union, said non-minority turnout has been minimal, and she hopes for greater community participation in upcoming events. "We've been trying to focus on making the events really visible to the public," Boyd said.

"We're doing a lot more this year than in previous years," Boyd said. Overall turnout so far seems to have grown along with the agenda, a development which Boyd attributed to increased student participation in the planning of events.

A showing of the first and second parts of the Eyes on the Prize series kicked off the month and was well attended, according to Boyd. "The best test will be when we start having our larger events, though," she said.

Last night's activity was a showing of Talent Extravaganza, a production featuring students, according to Shawniqua T. Williams '94.

Boyd predicted that the guest appearance of actor and director Ivan Dixon will also be popular. Dixon, well known for his role on Hogan's Heroes, will present his film The Spook Who Sat by the Door on Feb. 15.

Some of the other events of the celebration will include Cultural Awareness Day on Feb. 13, a minority career fair on Feb. 22 and the theatrical presentation African American Living Museum on Feb. 27.

A complete list of the activities offered is available in Room

5-106.

Dating to the early 1900s, Black History Month is celebrated nationwide.

The idea behind the month originated with Carter G. Wilson, one of the first black historians, who saw the celebration as a way to increase understanding of and appreciation for black history.

MIT has celebrated Black History Month for well over a decade.