BSU Black History Month 

For centuries, Black individuals in various countries worldwide have contributed toward numerous achievements in the past, present, and future. Unfortunately, due to institutionalized racism, their stories are often overlooked. Originally created by Carter Woodson, Black History Month extends through the entirety of February and looks to celebrate these accomplishments on an international scale. To reach the surrounding community, Centennial High School’s Black student organizations worked together in order to commemorate Black history after a year that propelled the Black Lives Matter movement to the forefront of global news. 

Tori Pearson of Centennial’s Black Student Union shared the importance of these organizations exploring the impact and influence of Black innovators in not only the United States, but throughout  the entire world. “We want to take advantage of the stage we are given,” said Pearson. “Black people deserve to be celebrated everyday of the year, but it’s always nice to highlight and educate during this time.” 

Like many, Black history holds a special place in Pearson’s heart. Representation across all types of subjects and careers are important in allowing young Black students to view themselves in a myriad of possible futures not limited by their race. “Black history is something I’ve been celebrating my whole life,” Pearson explained. “And so to me it’s just another opportunity to gain more knowledge about our past, present, and future on a larger scale.” 

In a  virtual setting, the BSU teamed up with other Black student organizations such as Alpha Achievers and the Scholars Leadership Program to create several informative Social and Emotional Learning sessions to teach their peers even more about Black history. 

There were three separate sessions all held on February 22 and another will be held on March 1. Students had the option to attend a session about past, present, or future Black influence and culture between second period and lunch break. 

Pearson shared that the goal of the BSU “was to make a BHM presentation in which we could focus on Black joy.” She cited the events over the last year; such as the repetitive cycle of police brutality against Black citizens that clarified the prominence of racism in the US, in order to emphasize the need for celebration. “This past year has opened a lot of people’s eyes to how difficult it can be to be Black,” she noted. “So we wanted to have the chance to focus on the good.” 

Whether it be reflection or celebration, Black History Month shows us not only how far we have come, but how much there is left to do. This is not just during turbulent times or during a single month, but consistently supporting and uplifting Black voices as they continue to make history. “Year round, we would love to see more genuine allies in and out of school,” Pearson urged. “And during BHM, just elevating our voices.” 


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