Highlighting the black experience

By: Essence Buckman, senior writer

Expect to see a Black History Month jam packed with events. “There is probably something going on every day,” says Demario Watts, Dean of Diversity and Leadership Development.

The Office of Diversity and Inclusion and its organizations, Office of International Programs and the Center for Community Based Learning, and faculty have been preparing a plethora of programs to keep the Wofford community engaged during this Black History Month. While there are events made for fun, such as the Paint and Pour event held on Feb. 8 and instructed by Raven Tucker, ’21, others are made to educate attendees on the black experience. One such event was the Black and Abroad discussion held on Feb. 7, which allowed students to share their experiences studying abroad to peers.

Watts says that the goal this year is to engage culture through conversation. There will be 12-13 educational events, with each event focusing on different things that are happening currently in society. For example, “Wofford Unfiltered,” taking place today, Feb. 13, was created to open up a discussion on micro aggressions and covert racism faced by students of color on campus. The goal of this event is to get the campus community involved and to encourage them to confront this conversation that may be viewed as uncomfortable by some. Three stories will be read, and those in attendance will be able to assess those experiences and figure out ways to fix those issues.

“We learn that storytelling changes attitudes,” says Watts, “so hopefully that’s a way that [people] can learn.”

Watts hopes that when they leave Wofford, students will be able to survive in a global society and he believes that having these educational conversations can benefit students in their endeavors post-graduation.

Here are some events this month to look forward to:


Feb. 15, 7 p.m., Richardson Family Gallery, Richardson Center of the Arts

Opening Reception for “Three-Point Perspective: Conversations in Imagination, Legend and Science”

Opening reception for professor Jessica Scott-Felder’s exhibition, “Three-Point Perspective: Conversations in Imagination, Legend and Science,” sponsored by the Department of African/African American Studies. The exhibit will be on display through March 1


Feb. 19, 5:30 p.m., Anna Todd Wofford Center, Andrews Field House

Race and Mental Health

There are over 42 million people in our nation that deal with various forms of mental illness and its effects on their activities each and every day. There are many stigmas and risks that surround mental health, specifically within marginalized communities and identities. Join us in the conversation, led by professional counselors.


Feb. 22, 6 p.m., McMillan Theater, Campus Life Building

Food for Thought with Ms. Alisha Sweatt

Hip Hop is more than just music – it is a way for various identity groups to have a voice and share their experiences through a unique art form. Ms. Sweatt, founder of Hip Hop Makes Me Feel, will have a conversation with our community entitled “Food For Thought.” This session is concentrated on the lyrics and the different types of rap under hip hop. The audience will get to share their opinion on Mumble Rap. They will also participate in the game, “Trash or Dope,” where they get to vote on different songs that are played.


Feb. 27, 7 p.m., Anna Todd Wofford Center, Andrews Field House

Community Conversations: “Stand up or sit down, the debate regarding the Anthem”

Community Conversations is back for a new topic entitled “Stand up or sit down,” a conversation regarding the debate on the national anthem. Monica Branch and Joanne Franklin will discuss a brief history about the national anthem, and facilitate a discussion to gain campus leader opinions on this national issue.

And many more! To see a full list, visit http://www.wofford.edu/newsroom/2018/February-events-at-Wofford-College/

If you have any questions or comments please contact Dean Watts at wattsdl@wofford.edu or 864-597-4049.

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