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Stew Lilker’s

Columbia County Observer

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Florida Gateway College Celebrates Black History Month

Denisha Moody and Atterria Cray
Florida Gateway College students Atteria Cray (left) and Denisha Moody.

FGC population by race/ethnicityCOLUMBIA COUNTY, FL – Yesterday, February 13, 2019, the Florida Gateway College Campus Activity Board sponsored a Black History Festival in the Student Activity Center.

There were different booths manned by students featuring different topics of the history of Black Americans, such as the Children's March and the Underground Railroad. Anyone that attended could partake of a free lunch.

FGC students view exhibits during Black History celebrationFlorida Gateway College is located on the east side of Lake City, Florida. In 1961, it began as a junior college on the old naval air station, as many junior or community colleges began after the war and around that time on similar military installations.

All across the country, these small two year colleges gave rural and low and moderate income students the chance at furthering their educations, expanding their horizons, and also learning occupational skills.

In 2012, the wizards in Tallahassee converted Florida's two year community colleges into 4 year colleges. There are many that think this was and continues to be the wrong move.

Marissa Congressi, event coordinator
Marissa Congressi, the event hostess, had a big smile for everyone.

The exhibits and the event were created by the Campus Action Board (CAB). Marissa Congressi, the social media and marketing coordinator for the Campus Action Board, was the coordinator and hostess of the event.

Ms. Congressi said, "It is important for the staff and students to learn about black history," adding, "The CAB created the signs and posters for the event."

One Person from the Administration Stopped By

John Jewett, the Executive Director of Occupational Education, was the only member of the administration to stop by the event.

He reviewed the video of the Children's March and the other exhibits, and enjoy the lunch.

FGC's John Jewett and student Jared Thomas
John Jewett (left) and exhibit explainer Jared Thomas, who drives 40 miles each way to attend classes.

He said, "We are proud to recognize Black History Month. It is important for us to expose our students to various cultures and their histories."

Mr. Thomas, the exhibit explainer said he was a first year student and eventually wants to become an Ag teacher.

Comments  (to add a comment go here)

On March 11, 2019, LJ Two Spirits Johnson wrote (posted 3/14)

After being gone for a little over two (2) months, I am glad to be home and catch up on my reading. The students at FGC did a great presentation on Black History Month.  I learned more about the Afro American culture.  I am truly looking forward to a like article on the Native American Month.  This is just one of the many cultures that comprises Lake City.

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