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Black History Month Celebrated at Stony Brook University

This Year’s Theme: “Sankofa! Black Creativity”

Stony Brook, NY–January 29, 2021–As Stony Brook University studentsBlack history month stony brook university resume classes on February 1, the University community will celebrate Black History Month (BHM), honoring the African-American experience and accomplishments. The month-long tribute will be conducted in a hybrid fashion: in-person and virtually via Zoom. It will begin with an opening ceremony featuring keynote speaker Dr. Julieanna Richardson, founder of The HistoryMakers collection on Wednesday, February 3, 2021 at 1pm. Stony Brook University has recently begun utilizing The HistoryMakers Digital Archives, the nation’s largest African American video oral history collection of scholarly materials which will be the main focus of this year’s celebration.

“In addition to celebrating this long-standing tradition at Stony Brook University, we recognize this pivotal time in America’s history,” said Dr. Judith Brown Clarke, Vice President for Equity & Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer. “We seek to create a learning experience that will look to end racism, create social change, and build a more humane and just society for African Americans and the entire nation.

The HistoryMakers collection features scholarly materials that provide insight into African-American history, culture and creativity. The HistoryMakers’ founder and BHM keynote speaker Julieanna Richardson will share her vision and desire to preserve the rich history of African Americans. Richardson’s diverse background is in law, television production and the cable television industries and she combined her various work experiences and her passion for American Studies to conceptualize, found and build The HistoryMakers.

This sustainable theme for this year’s BHM is “Sankofa! Black Creativity.” The concept of Sankofa has its origin in Ghana, West Africa. When translated, it means that “it is not taboo to go back and fetch what you forgot.” Sankofa is used throughout the pan-African world to promote the idea that African people must go back to their roots in order to move forward. The theme was created to re-ignite awareness, appreciation, passion, and commitment to BHM for all people, but especially those whose ancestors are from the African Diaspora. This year’s theme, “Sankofa! Black Creativity” pays tribute to those who have enriched American life with their invaluable contributions to science, education, economics, political movements and the arts and who have worked and continue to strive to rectify inequality and injustice in our society.


Throughout BHM, Stony Brook University will feature a number of educational, cultural and historical community events including:

Black History Month activities at Stony Brook University are coordinated by the Office of Multicultural Affairs, Department of Africana Studies and the Black History Month Committee.

Media Contact: Joan Behan-Duncan, Stony Brook Media Relations, 631.632.6310

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About Stony Brook University

Stony Brook University, widely regarded as a SUNY flagship, is going far beyond the expectations of today’s public universities. With more than 26,000 students, 2,700 faculty members, over 200,000 alumni, an academic medical center and 18 NCAA Division I athletic programs, it is one of only four University Center campuses in the State University of New York (SUNY) system. The University embraces its mission to provide comprehensive undergraduate, graduate, and professional education of the highest quality, and has been ranked among the top 35 public universities in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. Fostering a commitment to academic research and intellectual endeavors, Stony Brook’s membership in the Association of American Universities (AAU) places it among the top 65 research institutions in North America. The University’s distinguished faculty have earned esteemed awards such as the Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize, Indianapolis Prize for animal conservation, Abel Prize and the inaugural Breakthrough Prize in Mathematics. Part of the management team of Brookhaven National Laboratory of the U.S. Department of Energy, Stony Brook is one of only eight universities that has a role in running a national laboratory. Providing economic growth for neighboring communities and the wider geographic region, the University totals an impressive $7.23 billion in increased economic output on Long Island. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter (@stonybrooku).

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