San Bernardino Valley College students, faculty and staff are eagerly awaiting a campus visit from distinguished professor, activist and author Maulana Karenga, best known as the creator of the pan-African and African-American holiday of Kwanzaa. On Wednesday, February 27, Dr. Karenga’s appearance at San Bernardino Valley College will be titled, “Message and Mission in Black History: Forging a Future and World of Inclusive Good.”
Presented in partnership with San Bernardino Valley College’s Black Faculty & Staff Association, Student Equity Committee, and Arts, Lectures and Diversity Committee, the event will begin at 6:00 p.m. at the SBVC Auditorium located at 701 S. Mt. Vernon Avenue in San Bernardino. It is free and open to the community.
For those who follow his research, Dr. Karenga’s visit will serve as a reminder of the global impact he has had as the originator of the Seven Days of Kwanzaa. Event organizers are expecting him to share his views on the far-reaching benefits of social change and the pan-Africanist movement.
Ernest Guillen, SBVC library technical specialist and co-chairman of the college’s Arts, Lectures & Diversity Committee, said Dr. Karenga brings a long list of impressive credentials to draw from.
“A lot of our students have already begun buzzing about having someone of his caliber on campus, and a lot of our faculty and staff are pretty excited,” he said.
Dr. Karenga holds two doctoral degrees and is professor and chair of Africana Studies at California State University, Long Beach. During the civil rights movement in the 1960s, Dr. Karenga was instrumental in the creation of Kwanzaa and the pan-Africanist Kawaida philosophy, which many SBVC students have studied about in their history classes.
According to Guillen, the college administration has put a lot of effort into making the event happen. “We as a campus are always thrilled to have a fellow educator come and deliver an address to our community. Our community is really hurting to hear these messages,” he said. “You always think of Black History Month as only speaking to a certain constituency group. In reality, the civil rights movement that the Black community spearheaded has trickled down to all of these other communities.”