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BHM Programming At Smithsonian’s NMAAHC Opens With Highlighting Impact of HBCUs

BHM Programming At Smithsonian’s NMAAHC Opens With Highlighting Impact of HBCUs

They’re examining the triumphs and challenges of Black education!

Black History Month (BHM) programming at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African American History and Culture (NMAAHC) is opening up with a virtual program that will highlight the impact of historically Black colleges and universities (HBCUs), the Smithsonian reports. 

The NMAAHC opened in September 2016, making history as the largest museum dedicated exclusively to telling the African American story and its impact on American and world history. Since then, the museum has welcomed more than seven million visitors from across the world and reached even more through its digital offerings. Now, to celebrate Black History Month, the museum is offering a variety of virtual programming for all age groups. First up is an interactive program highlighting the impact of HBCUs. 

“A Seat at the Table,” is a signature virtual program that invites participants to consider questions of race, identity and economic justice over a meal. This first BHM program will explore the challenges and triumphs of HBCUs and the ongoing fight to maintain their legacy. Dr. Julianne Malveaux, President Emerita of Bennett College for Women will moderate the conversation alongside Taiisha Swinton-Buck, Maryland’s 2021 Principal of the Year, Jitu Brown, National Director of the Journey for Justice Alliance, and Harry L. Williams, President & CEO of the Thurgood Marshall College Fund. 

Upon registration, participants will choose their meal selections, which will be delivered to them by the museum and when it’s time, they will log in to the program as they tackle the inception and history of HBCUs, their legacy and the continuing impact of the institutions today. 

“Access to higher education and formal schooling were new opportunities for African Americans during the Reconstruction era immediately following the Civil War. Education advocates helped foster the founding of several HBCUs, which trained generations of educators, lawyers, scientists and medical professionals. Their work helped shape some of the greatest minds of the 19th and 20th centuries. However, Jim Crow laws forcibly segregated schools, leaving many Black institutions underfunded and overburdened - a complicated legacy that reverberates to the present,” a statement about the program reads. 

There are also a plethora of other virtual programs exploring Black health and wellness, The Black Panther party, Black veterans, the lasting impact of Reconstruction, using deed records to uncover your family history, Black creativity and abstract art, and a number of other interactive offerings highlighting icons like Maya Angelou and Granville T. Woods.

“A Seat at the Table: The Triumphs and Challenges of Black Education” takes place on February 4th from 7pm to 9pm ET. 

To learn more about the NMAAHC's Black History Month programming, click here.

Photo Courtesy of Smithsonian