Black Minds Matter

The Multi-cultural Student Center

Many college spring breakers flock toward the warmer weather with friends, music and fun. However, some students at the University of Central Florida have a different plan.

Trading in their sandals for sneakers, a group of UCF students is heading to Washington D.C. in hopes of learning more about African-American culture and history.

Cassandra Allen, Student Director of the Multicultural Student Center, is helping coordinate the trip and hopes the students will gain valuable knowledge on the trip.

“We thought this trip would be a great idea to charge our students to learn outside of the UCF community. We hope this trip empowers our students to bring back the knowledge they have learned here to UCF and make a difference,” Allen said. 

In Washington D.C. they will be visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture. With only 10.5 percent of the UCF student body identifying as African American, and less than 9 percent among the staff, according to the UCF website, the trip to D.C. aims to inform the student body of the culture and history of some of their peers.

“I feel like learning African-American history outside of school is going to open my eyes in a way that books can't. I get to really feel how African-Americans were treated back then and what they went through so that I could be the person I am today,” said Princess Jhane Stepherson-Lowry, a junior who is attending the trip.

For Stepherson-Lowry, this trip is a great way for her to delve further into her roots.

Like Stepherson-Lowry, junior Hatticia Dover feels that there is not enough knowledge on black culture.

“We’re more than just slavery. You know we’re more than all these bad things that happen. We’re inventors, we’re scientist, we’re astronauts. We’re way more than this and it’s just crazy how it all starts and ends with slavery,” said Dover.

Dover, who was unaware of the trip and is heading to Miami for Spring Break, wishes that she knew about this trip beforehand and thinks it is going to be a great way for others to learn about black history. 

There are 25 students out of the 29 spots that were available going on this trip. The MSC Officials hope to promote the diversity of black culture to show a new perspective. The trip, which begins on Friday March 10, will give the students two days to explore the museum, and the rest of the time will be devoted to exploring the Nation’s Capital.

Originally published March 10

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