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Ontario Tech marks Black History Month

Black History Month graphic

February marks Black History Month: a time for acknowledgement, celebration and empowerment of Black community members in Canada, and around the world. It’s an opportunity to highlight how the leadership of Black community members strengthens and enriches us. Black History Month is also a time for each of us to reflect on the past, acknowledge the present and, through our daily efforts and actions, demonstrate our intent to work toward an inclusive world where we can all thrive, learn and grow together. 

Ontario Tech University is committed to nurturing a culture of inclusivity where Black colleagues, peers and friends can truly participate in all aspects of our community, and where all of us continuously seek opportunities to grow together and demonstrate active allyship. 

“Learning about the histories, experiences and perspectives of the Black community, while seeking our own personal and unique ways to demonstrate active allyship, will enable and support Ontario Tech in our pursuit to advance knowledge, propel innovation and most importantly nurture a community of inclusion where we can learn and grow together,” says Ruth Nyaamine, Assistant Vice-President, Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging, Ontario Tech University. “Black History Month affords us the opportunity to acknowledge the contributions of those that came before, celebrate the progress made and more critically, empowers us to seek continued progress and advancement of all voices in all spaces.”

This year, Ontario Tech University will celebrate Black History Month by offering a variety of virtual and in-person events, initiatives and resources that highlight Black Canadian culture, promote an awareness of history, and provide an open space for conversations.

Allies in Equity basketball tournament

The Ontario Tech Athletics department and Office of Diversity, Inclusion and Belonging will host a basketball tournament to amplify the importance of allyship in sport. The tournament will include two action-packed days of competition between high school student-athlete teams, as well as workshops and conversations about how we can improve inclusion in sports.

Basketball tournament:

  • When:
    • Friday, February 2: 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.
    • Saturday, February 3: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.
  • Where: Campus Recreation and Wellness Centre (CRWC), gyms 3, 4 and 5

Additional programming:

  • When: Friday, February 2:
    • Panel with Ontario Tech and Durham College student-athletes: 4 p.m.
    • Presentation from Ontario Tech’s Office of the Registrar: 5:30 p.m.
    • Campus tour: 6 p.m.
  • Where: Activities begin in Gordon Willey Building, Room G213 (Dining Room)

Varsity basketball games: Don’t forget to cheer on our Ridgebacks women’s and men’s basketball teams on:

  • Friday, February 2 at 6 and 8 p.m.
  • Saturday, February 3 at 4 and 6 p.m.

Proceeds from varsity game tickets and donations will go toward the Black Athlete Association Bursary for Marginalized Groups bursary fund.

Black History Month Digital Exhibit at the Campus Library

Check out the Black History Month Digital Exhibit at the Campus Library underway through Thursday, February 29. This online exhibit features library collections and resources pertaining to Black History Month, curated by Ontario Tech librarians.

Celebrate Black History Month with Afrobeats

Join in on a fun, engaging and culturally centred afternoon while engaging in the hottest music and dance trends. This event will feature a performance by the Afiwi Groove dance team.

  • When: Tuesday, February 13 from 1 to 2:30 p.m.
  • Where: Science Building, Founding Deans Atrium
From the Ancient to Modern - Placing Africa at the Centre of our History

On Thursday, February 8, Ontario Tech’s Faculty of Social Science and Humanities (FSSH) and Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Belonging, with the Carpenters Union, Local 397 will host this free public event to celebrate Black History Month with entertainment, conversation and food.

Following a reception, there will be a conversation between Howard French, Professor and author of Born In Blackness: Africa, Africans and Modernity, and Dr. Wesley Crichlow, Professor, FSSH and critical race theory scholar. Together, they will deconstruct the historical erasure and unrecognized role that Africa has played in the making of the ‘modern world.’ This event will take place in person and will also be livestreamed online. 

  • When: Thursday, February 8
    • Reception from 6 to 7 p.m
    • Discussion from 7 to 8:30 p.m
  • Where: Regent Theatre, 50 King St. E, Oshawa

Register for the event on the Regent Theatre website.

Afternoon with Student Equity Engagement: Black History Month Edition

The Student Engagement and Equity (SEE) team will dedicate its weekly Afternoons with SEE programming to celebrating Black History Month.

Afternoons with SEE provides a safe space for students to create, play, chat and connect with their peers.

  • When: Tuesday, February 27 from 2 to 4 p.m.
  • Where: Shawenjigewining Hall, Room 210
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