Students examine race and culture issues


TUSKEGEE, Ala. (February 19, 2014) – For Black History Month, students met to have an organized discussion pertaining to the black race. The event entitled “S.K.I.N.”, which stands for Seeking Knowledge in Numbers, was held Tuesday in Armstrong Auditorium. The forum was hosted by the Tuskegee Colony of Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc. and the Beta Zeta Chapter of Gamma Sigma Sigma National Service Sorority, Inc. About 40 students attended the two hour-event. During the event, Tuskegee University students met to discuss important issues in the black community such as interracial dating, the absence of fathers in the black community, and the emergence of the natural hair movement.

“With the current celebration of Black History Month, we found the impact of identity, social media, media portrayal, and music in the African-American community to be important in our celebration and understanding of black history and black identity,” said Jessica Warbington, a graduating senior psychology major from Los Angeles. “Our goals for the forum were to shed light on important topics in minority communities and to inspire students to seek solutions and encourage future discussions.”

Headed by a panel of four students from different sectors of the campus, the event was done as a question and answer style forum. The moderator first asked the panel of students a question about a current issue. After hearing their response, he opened up the question to the audience who had 30 seconds to add their own commentary. Filled with debate, laughter, radical points and some consensus, the event was an interesting look into what young people think about the black community today. 

When asked what his goal for the event was, Keith Oliver an aerospace engineering major from Columbus, Ga., said:

“Iota Phi Theta Fraternity, Inc. is well versed in the subject of black history. Our organization was founded in the midst of the Black Civil Rights Movement in 1963. Seeing as how our week is in the middle of Black History Month, we wanted to serve the students of Tuskegee by creating an environment where we can share our ideas and opinions on certain topics regarding the African- American/black race.”

Greek participants.

Panel discussion.

Story and photos by: Karlette Sullivan, Tuskegee University Office of Communications, Public Relations and Marketing

© 2014 Tuskegee.University

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