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Indiana University Northwest

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IU Northwest announces upcoming Diversity Programming events

Spring events incorporate fine and performing arts, music and literature


The Core Ensemble, a musical trio of cello, piano and percussion, will perform during the 'Aint I a Woman' theatrical production held on campus on March 1.

Core Ensemble
The Core Ensemble, a musical trio of cello, piano and percussion, will perform during the 'Aint I a Woman' theatrical production held on campus on March 1.

The upcoming events, anchored in diversity, culture, education, and entertainment, include a presentation by the Brown Sisters of “Brown vs. the Board of Education” fame, a book reading and signing by author and illustrator Jan Spivey Gilchrist, and a lively musical theatre production celebrating the life and times of four powerful African-American women.

IU Northwest has long been recognized as a regional university with strong diversity values, and the campus is pleased to invite the Northwest Indiana communities to these exciting happenings.

January 13: Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day Celebration

John Stokes, the original plaintiff in the Brown vs. the Board of Education Supreme Court case, will join Cheryl Brown Henderson at IU Northwest’s Martin Luther King, Jr. Celebration. The event is scheduled for 6 p.m. on Thursday, Jan. 13 in the Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium. John Stokes replaces Linda Brown Thompson, who was originally scheduled to speak alongside her sister, Ms. Henderson.

Together, the two speakers will recount their role in the historic case that led to the Supreme Court’s decision allowing equal access to education for minorities in the United States.

Henderson is one of the three children of the late Rev. Oliver L. Brown. She is dedicated to preserving the historic legacy of the landmark U.S. Supreme Court decision of 1954, Brown vs. the Board of Education of Topeka, Kan. This milestone in American history declared state laws establishing separate public schools for African American and Caucasian students to be unconstitutional. The law also made it legal to allow minority children equal educational opportunities.

Henderson has been a sixth grade teacher, university guest lecturer, school guidance counselor, and state educational administrator, and she is currently President and CEO of The Brown Foundation for Educational Equality, Excellence and Research. The Foundation has provided scholarships to more than 100 minority students, presented awards to local, state and national leaders, and established libraries for children in low-income communities. Henderson also has an extensive background in education, business and civic leadership, having served on and chaired various local, state and national boards.

In 1951, Stokes helped to organize, strategize, plan and lead a student strike for better conditions at Robert Russa Moton High School in Farmville, Va., a strike that made Stokes a plaintiff in the landmark civil rights case, Brown vs. the Board of Education.

While serving as an educator in Baltimore, Stokes received many awards from the mayor, governor and others due to his ability to bring the inner city students' achievement levels far above the norm.

Stokes also served as an elementary and junior high school teacher, an administrative intern under the auspices of The Rockefeller Foundation, a master teacher, assistant principal, and principal, before retiring in 1994. Since retiring, Stokes has served as an adjunct professor at different colleges and universities. He served as an ad hoc member of a steering committee at the Virginia General Assembly.

The campus and the regional community are invited to this event. Seating for this event is limited; please arrive early. A reception will immediately follow the keynote address.

The Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium is located in the Savannah Center on the southeast corner of the main campus parking lot at 33rd Avenue and Broadway in Gary.

February 2: Black History Month Event – Book Reading and Signing by Jan Spivey Gilchrist

Jan Spivey Gilchrist, a prized author and illustrator of children’s books, will be on the IU Northwest campus on Wednesday, Feb. 2 at 10 a.m.

Gilchrist will read several of her books to a group of fourth through sixth-graders who attend a local grade school. Following her reading, she will have selections of her books for sale and provide autographed copies.

Jan Spivey Gilchrist's career as a fine artist has spanned a quarter of a century. She has exhibited extensively throughout the United States, Canada, Europe and the Caribbean. She has won numerous awards and commissions throughout her career, including the Coretta Scott King Award for Nathaniel Talking, and a Coretta Scott King Honor Book for Night on Neighborhood Street. Gilchrist is also the author of two picture books, Indigo and Moonlight Gold, and Madelia. Indigo and Moonlight Gold is treasured by many for its sensitive and moving text, as well as for its striking illustrations, and Madelia is a beautifully illustrated story of an artistic young girl.

Her most recent book, Obama: The Day the World Danced, is the first picture book in the U.S. about the historical election.

Other works by Gilchrist have appeared on national television, and her illustrations have been featured or reviewed in the New York Times, Boston Globe, Washington Post, L.A. Times, USA Today, Chicago Tribune, Ebony Magazine, and others. She was inducted into the International Hall of Fame for Writers of African Descent in October of 2000. She was also inducted into the prestigious Society of Illustrators in 2001.

The public is invited and encouraged to attend this event, which will take place in the Bruce W. Bergland Auditorium located in the Savannah Center on the southeast corner of the main campus parking lot at 33rd Avenue and Broadway in Gary. Free guest parking is located in the lot north of 33rd Avenue between Broadway and Jefferson St.

February 8: Black History Month Event – A Taste of Soul Food

On Tuesday, Feb. 8, the Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Office of Student Life and Athletics will host “A Taste of Soul Food” in the Savannah Center beginning at 11 a.m.

At “A Taste of Soul Food,” participants will be able to receive free tickets for a sampling of several food items. Food items from previous years include: jerk chicken; macaroni and cheese; candied yams; catfish nuggets; greens; corn bread muffins; peach cobbler; and turkey with gravy.

IU Northwest invites students, faculty, staff, and the Northwest Indiana community to participate in this free, fun and tasty cultural event.

Savannah Center is located on the southeast corner of the main campus parking lot at 33rd Avenue and Broadway in Gary. Free guest parking is located in the lot north of 33rd Avenue between Broadway and Jefferson St.

February 17: Black History Month Event – African American Choral Ensemble

A wide repertoire of music can be enjoyed at the IU Northwest campus by the African American Choral Ensemble (ACE) on Thursday, Feb. 17 at 6 p.m. The concert will take place in the Library Conference Center (Room 105ABC).

The Choral Ensemble, based in IU Bloomington, will deliver a broad repertoire of spiritual, folk form, traditional and contemporary gospel music, and formally composed works, by and about the African American experience.

Keith McCutchen directs the voices that make up the sounds of joy, sorrow, reflection and celebration that express the rich and varied traditions of African American choral music and the complexities of the Black American experience.

Since its founding in 1975, the Ensemble has been devoted to presenting and promoting the rich and varied traditions of choral music.

The African American Choral Ensemble is one of three ensembles of the IU African American Arts Institute (AAAI), which is one of the premier university performing arts programs in the nation. The AAAI seeks to promote and preserve African American culture through performance, education, creative activity, research and outreach.

The public is invited and encouraged to attend this free event. Seating for this event is limited; please arrive early.

The Library Conference Center is located on the southeast corner of campus at 35th Avenue and Broadway in Gary. Free guest parking is located in the lot north of 33rd Avenue between Broadway and Jefferson St.

March 1: Women’s History Month – ‘Ain’t I a Woman!’ Theatre Production

A musical theater production is coming to campus on Tuesday, March 1 at 3 p.m. in the Library Conference Center (Room 105ABC). The production, ‘Ain’t I a Woman!,’ celebrates the life and times of four powerful and distinguished African American women.

The Core Ensemble, a musical trio of cello, piano and percussion, will perform as Taylore Mahogany Scott portrays four influential characters: renowned novelist and anthropologist Zora Neale Hurston; ex-slave and fiery abolitionist Sojourner Truth; exuberant folk artist Clementine Hunter; and fervent civil rights worker Fannie Lou Hamer.

The musical score is drawn from the heartfelt spirituals and blues of the Deep South, the urban vitality of the Jazz Age, and contemporary concert music by African American composers such as Charles Mingus, Thelonius Monk, Max Roach and Diane Monroe.

The Core Ensemble, since 1993, has toured in every region of the United States and internationally to Australia, Russia, Ukraine, and the British Virgin Islands. In 2000, the musical trio was recipient of the Eugene McDermott Award for Excellence in the Arts awarded by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The Core Ensemble has received support from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Palm Beach County Cultural Council, and the Aaron Copland Fund for Music, among others.

Taylore Mahogany Scott has performed in film and television, including the nationally televised PBS show ‘African American Lives’ with Oprah Winfrey. Her theater credits include New York Classical Theatre ‘All’s Well that Ends Well’ and ‘As You Like It;’ American Globe Theatre ‘Romeo and Juliet;’ Cincinnati Shakespeare Festival ‘Macbeth;’ and Dallas Theatre Center ‘A Christmas Carol’.

The March 1 event is free and open to the IU Northwest and greater Northwest Indiana community. Seating for this event is limited; please arrive early.

The Library Conference Center is located on the southeast corner of campus at 35th Avenue and Broadway in Gary. Free guest parking is located in the lot north of 33rd Avenue between Broadway and Jefferson St.

March 15: Meals on Wheels on the Road

The public is encouraged to attend an information session focused on the Meals on Wheels program, which provides home-delivered meal services to people in need. Individuals interested in learning more about the program, or about volunteer opportunities, are invited to the IU Northwest campus on Tuesday, March 15. The program will take place in the Library Conference Center (Room 105ABC) and will begin at 11 a.m.

A complimentary Meals on Wheels lunch will be served to all those in attendance.

Help the campus celebrate the diversity of the program, and those served, by learning more about Meals on Wheels and how the program can help to drive out hunger in our community.

The Library Conference Center is located on the southeast corner of campus at 35th Avenue and Broadway in Gary. Free guest parking is located in the lot north of 33rd Avenue between Broadway and Jefferson St.

For more information on Meals on Wheels, please visit http://www.mowaa.org/.

Published: 

Media Contact

Emily Banas
Office of Marketing and Communications
980-6536
ebanas@iun.edu

Charles Sheid
Office of Marketing and Communications
980-6802
ccsheid@iun.edu

Related Links

Office of Diversity Programming

Office of Multicultural Affairs


Additional Article Photos

Miyoshi Dowden
Jan Spivey Gilchrist, a prized author and illustrator of children’s books, will be on the IU Northwest campus on February 2.