Guests, Event and Art Work From the 2015 Black History Month at Hostos
The Hostos community enjoyed an exhilarating and exciting 2015 Black History Month. Its Afrocentric focus and contemporary relevance made it a dynamic month of events.
The 2015 Black History program was made possible thanks to the collaboration of Hostos professors and its main organizer Dr. Ana Ozuna who sharpened its focus.
The objective of the 2015 Black History Month program was to continue the work of the social justice campus coalition “Hostos Hands Up” while reflecting the praxis of Afrocentricity and the core principles of Black Studies. Dr. Khalil Gibran Muhammad, the Director of the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture served as the keynote speaker of the program. During his presentation, he delineated the history of racist policing and unfair treatment of African Americans based on his recent publication, The Condemnation of Blackness: Race, Crime and the Making of Modern America, required reading in BLS 150: Ethnicity, Health and Illness course. Dr. Williams presented the zeitgeist of the contemporary struggle for social justice and emphasized the emancipatory knowledge necessary for the Black Lives Matter movement to flourish.
The program also featured two Afrolatin@ programs which incorporated the African Diaspora experience sometimes lacking in Black History Month events. As a Latin American Caribbean Studies professor and an Afro-Dominican it was Professor Ozuna’s priority to include these events. The Ocha People: The Emancipatory Knowledge of Afro-Cuban Culture lecture examined the origins of the Lukumí traditions throughout the Americas and explained how Africans preserved their spiritual practices and traditions since slavery to present-day.
Apart from featuring Afro-Cuban culture as part of the program, the penultimate event featured an interactive performance, lecture and class of Capoeira, the Afro-Brazilian martial and dance art form that has captured the world in the last half century. Over 40 students, faculty and staff enjoyed the Capoeira performers who demonstrated acrobatic moves and maculele (a dynamic stick dance); sang Brazilian songs and played instruments; and, lastly held a Capoeira lesson for all participants.
The last event, Egyptian Yoga allowed participants to restore, mind, body, spirit and learn about the African origins of this ancient tradition.
For Professor Ozuna, Dr. Muhammad’s participation was a great achievement. This collaboration will foster future intellectual exchanges with the Schomburg Center. Moreover, all the 2015 Black History Month programs were well attended and prompted on-going intellectual exchange.

About Hostos Community College
Eugenio María de Hostos Community College is an educational agent for change that has been transforming and improving the quality of life in the South Bronx and neighboring communities since 1968. It serves as a gateway to intellectual growth and socioeconomic mobility, as well as a point of departure for lifelong learning, success in professional careers, and transfer to advanced higher education programs. The College's unique "Student Success Coaching Unit" provides students with individualized guidance and exemplifies its emphasis on student support services.
Hostos offers 27 associate degree programs and two certificate programs that facilitate easy transfer to CUNY's four-year colleges or baccalaureate studies at other institutions. The College has an award-winning Division of Continuing Education & Workforce Development that offers professional development courses and certificate-bearing workforce training programs. Hostos is part of The City University of New York (CUNY), the nation's leading urban public university, which serves more than 500,000 students at 24 colleges.