Locat A&T alumni urge students to enter poster contest

By Larry Sutton - Contributing columnist

Organized in 2011 and officially chartered on Dec. 15, 2012, the Sampson County Chapter of the NC A&T Alumni Association remains committed to helping make dreams come true. In addition to providing scholarship assistance for deserving local students who wish to attend NC A&T, the local chapter also sponsors an annual Black History Month poster contest for county middle and high school students.

In gearing up for the 90th anniversary of the observance of Black History Month for 2016, sponsored annually by the Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH), founded by Harvard graduate Carter G. Woodson in 1915, information announcing the 2016 Black History Month poster contest, has been sent to each middle and high school in the county.

Carter G. Woodson, the Father of Black History, launched the idea of Black History Month in February 1926. In creating Black History Month, then called Negro History Week, Woodson wanted to use knowledge about the black past, not only to instill pride in black American heritage, but he also sought to inspire blacks to strive for excellence. In 1976 President Gerald R. Ford officially recognized Black History Month, calling the public to “seize the opportunity to honor the too often neglected accomplishments of black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history.”

The 2016 National Black History Month theme will be “Hallowed Grounds: Sites of African American Memories.” This theme will seek to highlight the imprint of Americans of African descent, showing how deeply embedded it is in the narrative of the American past. Many of the sites and landmarks include ports where the slave ships disembarked, battlefields where African descendants shed their blood in the struggle for freedom, black colleges and universities where education was pursued and communities created during centuries of migration.

Organizers of the poster contest stated, “We want this poster contest to provide all students a unique opportunity to learn more about America’s rich and diverse African American heritage, with a particular emphasis on the rich and diverse African American heritage in North Carolina. Through this art project, students will learn a great deal about the places that have been central in the making of African American memories.”

For those students who want more information about entering the 2016 Black History Month poster contest that is now underway, please contact your local school art teacher or call 910-564-4717.

North Carolina A&T is one of the country’s 19 historically black land-grant universities established by the Second Morrill Act passed by Congress in 1890, which allowed for the creation of separate public land-grant universities for the enrollment of black students.

Those individuals who would like to join the Aggie family and become a part of the Sampson County Chapter of the NC A&T Alumni Association are encouraged to attend the monthly meetings on each second Monday at First Baptist, 900 College St., Clinton, at 6:30 p.m.

By Larry Sutton

Contributing columnist

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