Student talent shined bright at this year’s Black History Festival, which topped off a month of activities celebrating African heritage. The two-hour celebration included singing, dancing, theater, poetry and an essay reading.
Audience members at the festival were wowed by IT Fundamentals student Isaac Abel, originally from Equatorial Guinea. Isaac sang an original composition celebrating his love for Africa.
Another highlight was a moving reenactment of a famous civil rights protest in the 1960s, the sit-in at Woolworth’s lunch counter. The skit, which drew gasps from the audience, was written and performed by Andrew Hinshaw’s ESL 8 students.
The festival also served as an opportunity to recognize the winners of the Black History Month Essay Contest. One of the winners, Vocabulary student Selene read an excerpt from her essay, which can be found here.
Throughout the month, the school community celebrated in a variety of ways. At the Sonia Gutierrez Campus, Resheda Pullen’s beautifully painted snapshots of African American life decorated one of the hallways.
Staff members participated in a lesson about Ethiopian culture lead by Alelign Dessie, Elsa Haile and Mengestu Ferede, all Ethiopian staff members of the Student Services Department. The activity, called How Much Do You Know About Ethiopia?, aimed to further educate staff members about the country with the second largest student population at Carlos Rosario.
Students also enjoyed a concert by the Ethiopian musician Yehunie Belay. Yehunie was accompanied by his band and dancers, who performed traditional and non-traditional styles. The performance showcased music and dance from different regions and ethnic groups of Ethiopia. This event allowed Ethiopian students to celebrate an important part of their culture with classmates from around the world.