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UC Merced Joins with Merced College to Celebrate Black History Month

February 20, 2003

MERCED, CA — The University of California, Merced and Extended Opportunity Programs and Services (EOPS) of Merced College are celebrating African-American History Month with an enlightening program on Monday, February 24, 2003.

Featuring a panel discussion on The Culture of Education in the African-American Community, the program will begin at noon in the Merced College Lesher Library. Michelle Allison, president of the Merced Chapter of NAACP, will serve as moderator of the discussion among panelists Helen Nixon, assistant principal of Merced's Golden Valley High School; Denard Davis, former assistant superintendent of the Merced County Office of Education; and Alfred Day, associate director of university relations for UC Merced.

The topic of the forum follows the national theme for this year's celebration of African-American History Month, which is “The Souls of Black Folk: Centennial Reflections.” The theme is intended to encourage examination of the state of the African-American in the United States today.

Originally founded as Negro History Week in 1926 by noted African-American author and scholar Dr. Carter G. Woodson, the weeklong event evolved into the establishment of February as African-American or Black History Month in 1976.

Monday's program will open with a performance of “Lift Every Voice and Sing,” the African-American National Anthem. The anthem was written by James Weldon Johnson, a Florida school principal, and his brother, J. Rosamond, for schoolchildren to sing at a celebration for Abraham Lincoln's birthday on February 12, 1900.

Everyone is welcome to attend the lunchtime program, to be held in Library 1 at Merced College, 3600 M Street in Merced. Parking permits will not be required from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on February 24 in staff and student parking spaces on campus.