Lee College to celebrate Black History Month with free events throughout February

BAYTOWN, TX — Lee College will celebrate Black History Month throughout February with a variety of free campus events that showcase and explore the myriad ways in which African-American culture and contributions have shaped and influenced the country.

Sponsored by International Education and the Reaching Excellence Against Limitations (R.E.A.L.) student organization, all Black History Month events are open to the public:

Tuesday, Feb. 7 – Opening Reception

Black History Month festivities will begin with an opening reception from 2-4 p.m., in the Lee College Library. Attendees will hear from guest speakers, enjoy a display of work from African-American artists and more.

Wednesday, Feb. 15 – Movie Screening: “13th”

The college will host a screening of the Oscar-nominated documentary “13th” from noon-1:30 p.m., at the Rundell Hall Conference Center.

Directed by Ava DuVernay of “Selma” and “Middle of Nowhere” acclaim, the film examines how abolishing slavery through the 13th Amendment to the Constitution did little to quell racial inequality in the United States, where black Americans have had to face Jim Crow laws and continued mass incarceration by the criminal justice system.

Monday, Feb. 20 – Read-In

Faculty, staff and students will bring the words of African-American authors to life in a read-in scheduled for 3-4 p.m, in Edythe Old Studio. Readers will share passages from both literature and poetry.

Wednesday, Feb. 22 – “Did You Know?” Tribute to Great African-Americans

Lesser-known African-American heroes will be spotlighted in “Did You Know,” a theatrical tribute set for 5:30 p.m., in Tucker Hall, that will include live re-enactments of great moments in black history.

The show will feature Ruby Bridges, the first black child to attend an all-white school in the American South; Robert Smalls, a former slave who escaped to freedom and later became a sea captain, businessman and politician in the South Carolina legislature; Noble Drew Ali, founder of the Moorish Science Temple of America; Miriam Makeba, a South African singer and civil rights activist known for denouncing apartheid and campaigning for the end of the oppressive policy on the world stage; and the Soledad Brothers, three young men who were falsely accused and later acquitted of murdering a white prison guard in the 1970s.

Tuesday, Feb. 28 – Movie Screening: “Thomlinson Hill”

The Black History Month celebration will end with a screening of the documentary “Thomlinson Hill” from 2-4 p.m., in Edythe Old Studio.

Set in Marlin, the film takes it name from the Texas slave plantation that was once the defining landmark of the region. The story focuses on a pair of descendants — Loreane Tomlinson, who is black, and Chris Tomlinson, who is white — who return to find a crumbling community still divided along class lines and on the verge of either economic revival or ruin.

For more information about Black History Month events at Lee College, contact Nader Naderi, chairman of International Education, at nnaderi@lee.edu.

Lee College offers more than 100 associate degree and certificate programs, as well as non-credit workforce and community education courses, that prepare its diverse student body for advanced higher education; successful entry into the workforce; and a variety of in-demand careers. With the main campus and McNair Center located in Baytown, Texas, and a satellite education center in nearby South Liberty County, the college serves a geographic area of more than 220,000 residents that includes 14 independent school districts. To learn more, visit www.lee.edu.