Tag Archives: BSU

Black History Month: How and Why we Celebrate

By Brody Beaupre

February 1 marks the first day of Black History Month nationwide. “Negro History Week” was first founded in 1926 by Association for the Study of African American Life and History (ASALH). Throughout the Civil Rights Movement, it evolved into Black History Month. This month was officially christened by President Gerald Ford in 1976. By celebrating this month, it has helped bring forth awareness to all the inequalities and discrimination Black people faced and continue to face in life and in history. Black History Month was put in place to “seize the opportunity to honor the too-often neglected accomplishments of Black Americans in every area of endeavor throughout our history,” Ford noted. The presidents have also given every Black History Month a theme. This year’s theme is “Black Resistance” because “African Americans have resisted historic and ongoing oppression, in all forms, especially the racial terrorism of lynching, racial pogroms and police killings,” according to the ASALH. These themes help us to make sure we know what we celebrate and why we celebrate it. 

How Oak Hall is celebrating Black History Month

Oak Hall is so thankful to have guest speaker Clint Clarke speak to the Upper School students on Feb. 2. about his personal life and his work at Walt Disney World. Clarke is the Senior Audio System Designer, Legacy Award Winner, and does Disney Live Entertainment. He has done so much work for Walt Disney World (Orlando), Disneyland Paris (France), The Disney Cruise Lines, and Shanghai Disney (China). He also has done lots of work for the Florida Gators both when he was a student and now with his company, Triple C Productions. Outside of all his amazing work in the audio world, he is also an all around great guy. He is always doing what he can to help others and is a bright spot in so many people’s lives (mine included). I am so excited for him to share his personal experiences and his insight/information on Black History Month. (Also shout out to Ms. Spencer and the Black Student Union for making this happen).

BSU Club Motivates Students with Guest Speaker

By Emily Youngblood

On Jan. 15, Oak Hall’s Upper School Black Student Union (BSU) invited University of Florida track and field head coach Mike Holloway to speak to its students about his life experiences. Not only is Holloway an accomplished collegiate coach, but he is also the head coach of Team USA’s track and field team at the upcoming summer Olympics in Tokyo. “Because Coach Holloway coaches freshmen, we thought it would be good for him to speak about the balance a student-athlete has to have to succeed both academically and athletically,” said BSU President and Oak Hall senior, Adryanna Jerkins.

After being introduced by his son, Oak Hall Alum M.J. Holloway (class of 2019), Coach Holloway spoke to students about how to achieve life aspirations using his four P’s: pride, passion, preparation, and people. The UF head coach believes that you need to take pride in everything you do, be passionate about what you care about, prepare for the future, and surround yourself with positive people.

Coach Mike Holloway gives OHS students advice on their future, using one of his four “P’s”

“You can be successful in this world if you decide to make the right choices,” he said. His piece of advice for students was to “set a goal and fight tirelessly every day to obtain it”.

“Hopefully the input provided by our guest speakers will inspire, inform, allay fears, and provide hope,” exclaimed BSU teacher sponsor, Sherolyn Spencer.

The BSU has also confirmed Commissioner Gail Johnson to speak during an assembly on Feb. 13 for Black History Month. The assembly will be open to Middle and Upper school students during FLEX period.