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ULM’s Black History Month Program to be held Friday, Feb. 23

Published February 15, 2024

BHM 2024

Want to go? 

WHAT: “A Black History Program: African Americans and the Arts”  

WHEN: 10 a.m., Friday, Feb. 23 

WHERE: Bayou Pointe Event Center 

COST: Free and open to the community  

MONROE, LA– The University of Louisiana Monroe Cultural Diversity Council and the Office of Global and Multicultural Affairs present “A Black History Program: African Americans and the Arts” at 10 a.m. on Friday, February 23, at Bayou Pointe Event Center. 

The program will feature keynote speaker, Victoria Jones. Jones is the founder of TONE in Memphis, TN, which is dedicated to elevating Black artists in Memphis, empowering Black communities, and shifting the culture of Memphis. TONE has been covered extensively in the media, including publications such as Essence Magazine, Vice, The Art Newspaper, and Madame Noire. TONE has created an art gallery and shared workspace for Black artists in the Orange Mound neighborhood of Memphis. 

Jones has been awarded the 2021 Grinnell College Innovator for Social Justice prize and was listed among the 2021 class of the Memphis Business Journal’s 40 Under 40 honorees. Jones has also been selected for the South Art’s cohort of Emerging Leaders of Color, named a Leadership Memphis Changemaker honoree, and named a Millennial Leader to Watch by the Black Millennial Convention in 2019.  

It is the belief of Jones and TONE that by empowering both the artist and the communities they serve, Memphis will begin to experience the cultural shift it so truly deserves. She has committed her love and energy to make that belief a reality.  

“The Office of Cultural and Multicultural Affairs and The Cultural Diversity Council are excited to take this time annually to reflect on the past, gain momentum in the present, and set goals for the future as a campus community as we celebrate Black History Month,” said Gina White, International Student Services and Multicultural Affairs Director. “It is our goal to continue to promote the embracing of our cultural differences and celebrate our similarities,” said White.  

This year’s program will also highlight the talent of ULM students through vocal and instrumental performances. 

Elaine Armstead, Vice President of the ULM Cultural Diversity Council, says the Black History Program is important because it helps keep focus on the importance of black history. “This program provides a platform to reflect on the contributions and achievements of black leaders, past and present, to inspire future contributors, innovations, and achievements,” said Armstead. “It also gives us time to educate and to spread awareness to those who are not familiar with the history of African American culture,” she added.  

This year’s Black History Month theme is “African Americans and the Arts.” According to the Association for the Study of African American Life and History, “African American art is infused with African, Caribbean, and the Black American lived experiences. In the fields of visual and performing arts, literature, fashion, folklore, language, film, music, architecture, culinary and other forms of cultural expression, the African American influence has been paramount.” The ASALH website continues, “In celebrating the entire history of African Americans and the arts, the Association for the Study of African American Life and History puts into the national spotlight the richness of the past and present with an eye towards what the rest of the twenty-first century will bring.” Learn more at https://asalh.org/black-history-themes/