LBCC’s EDI To Host A Variety Of Speakers Throughout February In Honor Of Black History Month

Raven Womack (left) and Javier Cervantes pose together during Womack's graduation in Spring 2018.

On Tuesday, February 11th Raven Womack will be speaking on “Life After LBCC” for Black History Month. As a former LBCC student and staff member, Womack is returning to home turf, having worked in the Equity Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) center where he will be speaking.

Javier Cervantes, director of the EDI, explained, “He’s a unique individual. You don’t often see tall African American men apply for jobs on campus. He and I had lots of conversations about that. So in those conversations we were just saying, ‘It would be great for you to share your story as an African American on the job hunt in Oregon.’ I think that’s a compelling story that we have a lot to learn from.” Womack will be one of five speakers speaking throughout the month at the EDI, which is located in Forum 220.

Cervantes said, “I call ourselves the campus living room. We are like the campus living room, because you get it all: good, bad and indifferent.”

Cervantes went on to recall an anecdote about the EDI, formerly known as the DAC, from when Womack worked there.

The EDI strives for complete inclusivity on LB’s campus since its inception. During Black History Month of 2013, a Commuter columnist, Dale Hummel, asked Cervantes, “Why isn’t there a white history month?”

“Every month is white history month,” replied Cervantes.

Womack, overhearing the exchange, took a different approach. He encouraged Hummel to use the space to host an event about white history, as long as the student organized the event himself. The EDI (DAC) has served as a haven for freedom of speech and press on campus; if a student organizes the event the EDI can host it.

“I think he (Hummel) was surprised that we opened the doors so readily and freely to his event,” said Cervantes, “But that’s the spirit of what we are trying to do.”

Cervantes is proud of the diversity the EDI brings together, saying that his first sight that Wednesday on coming to work on February 29th, was seeing a couple of the EDI student workers happily working together as they went from building to building on campus. Though the students have very different backgrounds, said Cervantes, they have found common ground in their studenthood at LBCC and work at the EDI.

Story by Karen Canan

For more information about Black History Month or other events held in the EDI, contact
Javier Cervantes 541-917-4299
Heather Morijah 541-917-4297
Tania Mendez 541-917-4292
LBCC’s EDI, or Institutional Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Center, is located in Forum 220.

Upcoming Events:

Wednesday, Feb 5th 11am-12pm: Dr. Tarron Anderson, Equity Associate at OSU with be discussing Black Men in Higher Ed.

Tuesday, Feb 11th 12:30pm-2pm Raven Womack, former LBCC student will be discussing Life after LBCC.

Wednesday, Feb 12th 12pm-1pm: Dorian Smith, former Beaver and former professional Canadian football defensive lineman. Currently, Coordinator of Black Student Access and Success at OSU will be discussing Black Men in College Sports and Life After.

Wednesday, Feb 19th 12:30pm-2pm: Alex Johnson, Albany’s first black city council member will be discussing his journey to the Albany City Council.

Thursday, Feb 20th 11:30 am-12:30pm: Jason Dorsette, Director of Advancing Academic Equity and Student Success and current Vice President of the NAACP local Chapter in Corvallis/Albany will be discussing Black Men Serving Their Communities.

Essays are due Friday, February 21st for Black History Month Essay Contest: #blackboyjoy #BlackboyJoy is the celebration of Black Boys and Men.
To submit an essay, please request a prompt from Dr. Ramycia McGhee (NSH 213) or Tristan Striker (NSH 214).

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