In celebration of Black History Month, Queens College is hosting a calendar full of events in February.
Their theme this year is Sankofa: Celebrating the Past, Building a Boundless Future. “Sankofa” is a word from the Akan people of Ghana.
It will include a series of free speaking events, film screenings, artistic performances and more.
Notable events include a speaking engagement by Olympic medalist Ibtihaj Muhammad, the first American woman to compete in the games wearing a hijab, a lecture about President Barack Obama’s legacy, and screenings of powerful films 13th and Selma.
Queens College played a role in the struggle for equal rights, officials said. In May 1965, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. was the first speaker at the school’s John F. Kennedy Memorial Lectures Series. Dr. King highlighted the power of peaceful resistance in his speech.
“Nonviolence is the most potent weapon available for oppressed people in their struggle for freedom and human dignity,” King said.
Queens College student Andrew Goodman was among the three men, along with James Chaney and Michael Schwerner, who were shockingly murdered during the Freedom Summer voter registration project in Mississippi.
The college’s Rosenthal Library clock tower is named after the three civil rights heroes.
Queens College has also previously honored civil rights pioneers such as Aaron Henry (1990) and Congressman John Lewis, who received an honorary degree in 2009.
Check out the calendar of events above.