By Taran McZee
         Director of Inclusion and Multicultural Services

What does Black History Month mean to me? Well, it means everything. Celebrating diversity, it means recognizing the accomplishments of African-Americans who helped to create and sustain this great nation of ours. I also believe it sends a message to not limit ourselves.

Yes, February is Black History month, but we should celebrate everyone, every day and respect and appreciate our differences. Black History Month should offer new insights for some and allow others to tell the struggles of people with a tarnished past, and how they endured severe injustices and overcame harsh realities to carry out a positive role in developing this great nation.

Black History Month should illustrate what is truly good about this country and provide living examples of our untapped potential.

Black History Month reminds us that we are better than our past. It provides the passion and motivation for redefining our purpose of embracing others with deeper skin tones, speaking with an unusual sounding dialect or dressing a little differently. Black History Month is the one period during the year that allows all Americans to learn about the accomplishments of African Americans. It’s about integrity, leadership and determination. Black History Month is about showing your true character.

Please join us Monday Feb. 9, at 7 p.m. in Prochnow Auditorium for STEP AFRIKA. Stepping is based on a long and rich tradition in African-based communities that use movement, words and sounds to communicate allegiance to a group. It draws movements from African foot dances, such as Gumboot, originally conceived by miners in South Africa as an alternative to drumming, which was banned by authorities. Even though the event is free, tickets are required and can be picked up at NAU’s Central Ticket Office.