What does Black History Month look like at Centennial?

Black history month is a time to recognize the culture, heritage, and legacy left by African Americans across the world. It’s a chance to appreciate not only the history, but the history in the making. During this month, Centennial students have displayed aspects of their culture, heritage and legacy in the various presentations of black culture and even embarked in the process of making some history of their own. All the activities, presentations, and displays are the Black Student Union’s (BSU) way of “educating the larger student body as to the ongoing black history that black history is not a thing that happened that it is still happening” says Black Student Achievement Program (BSAP) Liaison Keith Coutreyer. Take a look at some Centennial- represented Black History this month:

Centennial’s Natasha Green and Art National Honors society members Sylvia Rabine, Sakina Ibrahim, and Hanna Chen created a drawing showcase with portraits of several influential figures Including Chadwick Boseman, Rebecca Lee Crumbler, Katherine Johnson, Thurgood Marshall, Dorothy Dandridge, Douglass Wilder, and Madam C.J. Walker.

Each teacher was tasked with decorating their door specific to a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) of their choosing. Science teacher Ms. Shalonda Holt won first place in the “Divine 9” category, which includes historically black fraternities and sororities. The overall winner of Centennial’s 2023 door decorating contest was Spanish teacher Ms. Francisco, who decorated her door for Southern University.

Food for the Soul is an event the Scholars Leadership program, a serviced- based leadership program for students of color, has put on for years. It’s an opportunity they use to educate the larger community through performances, guest speakers, and of course, soul food. It was an amazing opportunity to bring together all different types of people in the community. Holt’s family contributed a substantial amount of effort in preparing for this event by cooking all of the food. It’s an event her entire family looks forward to each year, and with the recent passing of her grandfather, it was something they all did in honor of him. 

Co-presidents Jyenne Guide, Genevieve Chery and Alana Green are pictured here with community leaders Principal Cynthia Dillon and County executive Calvin Ball and several speakers from the event. Members of the Scholars Leadership Program put a lot of time and effort into planning for this event. Ultimately, “we want the students in this population to be seen . . . black history isn’t about grievance, it’s about celebration,” concludes BSAP Liaison Keith Coutreyer.

Holt, who sponsors the Scholars Leadership Program, says of the event, “I think of food, I think of family and everyone breaking bread together, and that’s the goal, for everyone to come share a meal together, learn a little bit of history, and just be a community, and I think it accomplished that goal.”


For more breaking news and photos, follow The Wingspan on Instagram and Twitter @CHSWingspan