Rev. Jesse Jackson highlights Black History Month on campus

BOWLING GREEN, O.—The Rev. Jesse Jackson, famed civil rights activist and two-time presidential candidate, will visit Bowling Green State University Jan. 25 as part of the campus's “Celebrating Our Heritage” commemoration of Black History Month.

In an address titled “Honoring His Dream … Making It Our Reality,” Jackson, who began his leadership in the civil rights movement as an assistant to Dr. Martin Luther King in the Southern Christian Leadership Conference, will discuss the late civil rights leader at 7 p.m. that evening in the Lenhart Grand Ballroom of the Bowen-Thompson Student Union.

Admission to Jackson's talk is free, but tickets are required and will be available beginning Jan. 16 at the Information Center in the union.

Jackson is the founder of numerous organizations aimed at bringing racial and gender equality and economic and social justice to the nation, including the Rainbow Coalition and People United to Save Humanity (now merged into the Rainbow/PUSH Coalition). His advocacy helped bring international issues such as apartheid in South Africa and the fight for democracy in Haiti to the forefront of the nation's consciousness.

Serving as an international diplomat on several occasions, he secured the release of captured Navy lieutenant Robert Goodman in Syria in 1984 and was the first American to bring freed hostages out of Kuwait and Iraq in 1990. In 1997, he was appointed by President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Madeleine Albright as Special Envoy of the President and Secretary of State for the Promotion of Democracy in Africa.

The author of two books, “Keep Hope Alive” and “Straight from the Heart,” Jackson is host of “Both Sides with Jesse Jackson” on CNN. His BGSU visit is sponsored by the Martin Luther King Jr. Legacy Committee.

The University will also remember King with a unity march from the union to Olscamp Hall beginning at 4 p.m. Jan. 21. The march will be followed by a reception from 5-7 p.m. in 101 Olscamp.

Also this month, the Gospel Choir will hold its fourth annual Gospel Fest at 7 p.m. Jan. 19 and 20 in the ballroom. The cost for the Friday evening performance is $7 for students and $10 for others; Saturday's tickets are $10 for students and $20 for others. Tickets for the entire weekend are $15 for students and $25 for others.

In addition, a special exhibit, “From Slavery to Freedom: The Story of Africans in America,” will be shown on the first floor of Jerome Library beginning Jan. 23, sponsored by University Libraries.

‘Celebrating Our Heritage' events

February, Black History Month, begins with a kickoff luncheon from noon-3 p.m. Feb. 3 in 202A Union. Sponsored by the Black Student Union, reservations for the event can be made by calling the BSU office at 419-372-2692.

Commons Dining Center will host a Black History Month brunch from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 5, and Founders Food Court will hold an African-American Heritage Luncheon at the same time Feb. 27.

The fifth annual Black Issues Conference, “Lifting as We Climb,” will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Feb. 3 in 101 Olscamp Hall. The conference will feature Dr. Elaine Richardson, an associate professor of English and applied linguistics at Pennsylvania State University, along with other presentations by students and faculty. For more information, call the Center for Multicultural and Academic Initiatives (CMAI) at 419-372-2642.

Dr. Angela Nelson, an associate professor and chair of BGSU's popular culture department, will present “Mapping the Study of Black Popular Culture” at 11 a.m. Feb. 15 in the Pallister Conference Room in Jerome Library. Nelson will look at the work and influence of pioneering black writer, scholar and activist W.E.B. Dubois and trace the history of scholarship in the field.

“Lost Boys of the Sudan,” a documentary film, will be screened at 3 p.m. Feb. 21 in the Union Theater following an introduction by Dr. Awad Ibrahim, an associate professor of educational foundations and inquiry. The presentation is sponsored by the University Libraries and the group Human Values for Transformative Action.

The campus will celebrate the musical and political legacy of famed reggae singer Bob Marley in a Feb. 22 tribute. The event will begin with a documentary film and discussion about Marley from 4-7 p.m. in 207 Union, followed by a reception from 7 p.m. to midnight in the Union's Black Swamp Pub.

The annual CMAI dinner theatre, featuring faculty, staff and students singing and dancing, will be held Feb. 23 and 24 in the ballroom. Tickets to the Friday performance of “The 90s, Part 2” are $12 and include light refreshments. Doors open at 7 p.m., with the show at 8 p.m. The Saturday performance costs $20 and includes a cash bar and buffet. Doors will open at 6 p.m., with the show at 7 p.m. Individual tickets can be purchased at the Information Center in the union. Table reservations can be made by calling 419-372-2642.

Other events, which continue into March, include a visit from Keith Beauchamp, director and producer of “The Untold Story of Emmett Till,” on March 29 and 30. The times and locations will be announced at a later time.

Events are subject to change. For more information, call the Center for Multicultural and Academic Initiatives at 419-372-2642.

For more information on Rev. Jackson please visit www.apbspeakers.com.

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(Posted January 05, 2007 )