Campus groups host fair to celebrate African American culture

In Campus News, News
Dancing, food and music were enjoyed by visitors at the Pan Africa Fair, which took place in the Becker Amphitheater Thursday and was part of the festivities for Black History Month. (Courtesy of Esther Ogunrinu)
Dancing, food and music were enjoyed by visitors at the Pan Africa Fair, which took place in the Becker Amphitheater Thursday and was part of the festivities for Black History Month. (Courtesy of Esther Ogunrinu)

Food, dancing and music marked the scene at the Becker Amphitheater Thursday, as students celebrated the Pan African Fair as part of Black History Month.

The annual fair was hosted to give the community more insight to African cultures.

Cultural activities included double-dutch jump roping, dominos, flag coloring and old and new hip-hop music. An African-American fraternity also performed a special step dance routine.

African-American student organizations, including The Black Student Union, Sister Talk and Delta Sigma Theta took part in the event.

The Black Student Union wanted to reach out to students and raise awareness of the low black population on campus, said Esther Ogunrinu, health sciences major and president of Sister Talk.

Currently, black students make up two percent of the student population at CSUF, Ogunrinu said.

Tremaine Tasher, director of administration for the Black Student Union, hoped the event would give students of different ethnicities more insight to the African-American community.

“(It’s to) give a positive outlook on what we do,” Tasher said. “It’s not the stereotypical things.”

Sister Talk, a student group dedicated to exploring the changing roles and concerns of black women on campus through meaningful dialogue focusing on relationships, community concerns and leadership, according to their website, was also at the event.

The group wanted to raise awareness that Sister Talk is a resource for the women on campus, Ogunrinu said.

Sister Talk also wanted to make connections with the other sororities on campus to build on diversity.

Ogunrinu said she hopes people will be more aware of the African-American community on campus and its cultural traditions. The group, she said, is aiming to do more events outside to engage the campus community and increase their visibility.

Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. was also present among the African-American student organizations hoping to bring awareness to the low population of black students on campus.

Jason Garnelladams, a marketing major, said he hoped this would allow the students to be more open-minded when it comes to understanding other cultures.

“(We’re here to) make it known to our whole campus, that’s why we are in an open environment, no closed door so the whole campus can see us,” Garnelladams said. “We’re not hiding anything at all … we’re not ashamed of what we are doing.”

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