Wellesley Celebrates Black History Month with a Variety of Events

Students study in a space in Harambee House.
Photo provided by Wellesley College Archives Department
February 5, 2018

Since 1970, Harambee House at Wellesley has provided students of African descent a space to study, explore their cultural heritage, connect with others who share similar backgrounds, and offer resources about Black heritage. This month, Harambee (Swahili for “working together”) will anchor Wellesley’s celebration of Black History Month.

Harambee House grew out of an effort, started in 1968, by the student group Ethos to establish a center for Black students. “When Wellesley College tells its story, students of African descent of the late 1960s should be acknowledged for their transformative acts that continue to shape this community some 50 years later,” said Tracey Cameron, assistant dean of intercultural education, director of Harambee House, and advisor to students of African descent.

Today, Harambee is home to six student organizations: Ethos, a support group for women of African descent; the Minority Organization of Pre-Medical students (MAPS); the Wellesley African Students Association (WASA); Women for Caribbean Development (WCD); Black Women’s Ministry; and blackOUT, which serves students of African descent who identify as LGBT or QIA.

Harambee House, said Cameron, is “a symbol of resistance, mobilization, change, and social justice. We serve as an educational space that supports the mission of the institution by providing opportunities for the campus as a whole to learn about the history and culture of people of African descent. Harambee House is Black history. It is Wellesley’s history.”

Black History Month Events on Campus

February 1

Stand Up, Speak Out: On Our African Identities

Multifath Center, 6 pm

Sponsor: Wellesley African Students Association (WASA)

February 1

Black Artists: A Year In Review

Pub, 10 pm

February 2

Intercollegiate African Students Roundtables

Alumnae Ballroom, 7 pm

Sponsor: WASA

February 3

WASA and Film Society Screenings

Collins Cinema, 7 pm and 9:30 pm

February 4

Open WASA General Meeting

Harambee House, 7 pm

February 5

Teff Theory: Art Exhibit and Q&A with Stephanie Nnamani

Tishman Commons, 7 pm

Sponsor: WASA

February 6

WASA and Yanvalou Present West African Drumming and Dance with Joh Camara

Tishman Commons, drumming at 5:30 pm and dance at 6:30 pm

February 7

Intro to Afro-Spinning

Keohane Sports Center 150A, 5 pm

Sponsor: WASA

February 9

Get Out and Talkback with Dr. Kellie Carter Jackson and The Color of Friendship

Film Screenings

Collins Cinema, 6:30 pm and 9:30 pm (respectively)

Sponsors: The Film Society and Harambee House

(Ticket required)

February 10

The Color of Friendship and Get Out

Film Screenings

Collins Cinema, 7 pm and 9:30 pm (respectively)

Sponsors: The Film Society and Harambee House

(Ticket required)

February 11

Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities

Screening and Discussion

Collins Cinema, 3 pm

(Ticket required)

February 17

Black Panther Private Screening

Location TBA1:30 pm

(Ticket required)

February 18

Taste of the Diaspora and Showcase

Tishman, 5 pm

February 20

Ethos’ Quintessence Day with Jamilah Lemieux

Harambee House, 4:30 pm

February 21

Public Tour: Art of Africa and the African Diaspora at Wellesley

The Davis Museum, 12:30 pm

February 22

Ori Inu Screening

Location TBA, 6 pm

February 24

Wellesley for Caribbean Development Expo

Tishman Commons, 5 pm

February 26

Ethos 50th Anniversary Exhibit Opening Reception

Location TBA, 6 pm

February 27

Afrofuturism, Divine Feminism, and Creating a New Future Now

Black History Month Lecture with Ytasha Womack

Harambee House, 4:30 pm

February 28

Black History Month Read-In featuring

Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi

Harambee House, 6 pm

Photo: Glen McNatt and his English 228 (Black Literature in America) class in Harambee House. April 1973.