AMES, Iowa -- The United States has recognized Black History Month each February since it was established in 1976 as part of the nation's bicentennial celebration. Iowa State University kicked off its annual observance of Black History Month with a Jan. 27 lecture from author Manning Marable, and will continue the celebration of African-American culture with the following public events:
- A Campus Conversation on Diversity - Panel Discussion Thursday, Jan. 29, noon, Pioneer Room, Memorial Union -- Join students, faculty and staff in a conversation about diversity on Iowa State's campus. Panelists will discuss their experiences in the classroom, workplace and in community life. The panel will be moderated by Barbara Woods, an extension specialist in family and consumer sciences, who was instrumental in organizing the Community Conversations on Diversity.
- "A Dream Fulfilled: The Saga of George Washington Carver" -- An Opera Monday, Feb. 2, 8 p.m., Great Hall, Memorial Union -- Celebrate the life of agricultural pioneer and Iowa hero George Washington Carver with this OPERA Iowa performance. Carver was the first African-American student and faculty member at Iowa State University. The opera focuses on the key events that shaped the destiny of this great scientist, educator and humanitarian. Composed by Iowa's own Michael Patterson, "A Dream Fulfilled" was commissioned by the Des Moines Metro Opera in cooperation with the State Historical Society of Iowa.
- Civility on Campus - Kathy Obear Thursday, Feb. 5, 7 p.m., Sun Room, Memorial Union -- Kathy Obear is the president of Alliance for Change and founding faculty of The Social Justice Training Institute. She worked in residence life at several universities before starting her consulting practice, which is devoted to organizational development, diversity and conflict resolution. Obear's presentation focuses on improving communication skills among students when different viewpoints are presented in the classroom. She works to create inclusive environments that influence the creativity, diversity and talent of all students.
- Gender and Race in the 2008 Campaign - Mary Frances Berry Tuesday, March 3, 8 p.m., Sun Room, Memorial Union -- Mary Frances Berry is the Geraldine R. Segal Professor of American Social Thought and professor of history at the University of Pennsylvania. She is the author of seven books, including "The Pig Farmer's Daughter and Other Tales of American Justice: Episodes of Racism and Sexism in the Courts from 1865 to the Present" and "And Justice for All: The United States Commission on Civil Rights and the Continuing Struggle for Freedom in America." She was previously a member of the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights, serving as chair from 1993 to 2004. She also served as the Assistant Secretary for Education in the U.S. Department of Health, Education, and Welfare; as provost of the University of Maryland and chancellor of the University of Colorado at Boulder.
Black History Month events are sponsored by the Carrie Chapman Catt Center for Women and Politics, the Center for American Intercultural Studies, the College of Engineering, the College of Human Sciences, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS), CALS Diversity Committee, CALS Student Council, Dean of Students Office, LAS Miller Lecture Fund, MLK Celebration Planning Committee, Margaret Sloss Women's Center, Multicultural Student Center, National Affairs Series (funded by the Government of the Student Body), Office of the President, Office of the Provost, the Student Union Board, YWCA Ames-ISU and the Committee on Lectures (funded by GSB