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West Virginia University at Parkersburg plans Black History Month events

Steven Smith (Photo Provided)

PARKERSBURG — West Virginia University at Parkersburg will celebrate Black History Month with two virtual events, including a keynote talk about diversity with Rodney Smith, vice president for access and engagement at William Jewell College.

The first event, “A View from a Black Perspective,” will be held 11 a.m. Wednesday. Sedonie Beckford, a WVU-P student, will interview Steven Smith about his journey through academia, challenges and opportunities facing the Black community and the importance of Black History Month.

Smith is the college’s first Black vice president of enrollment management and the Jackson County Center dean and CEO.

“This is an opportunity to share a perspective that is often lost in translation, and to provide truth and clarity about racial experiences that can sometimes not be clearly understood,” Smith said.

The second event, “Let’s Talk Diversity,” will be held 12:15 p.m. Feb. 24. Rodney Smith will provide insight into the implications of race and racism in American society and the Black Lives Matter.

Rodney Smith (Photo Provided)

In addition to his roles at William Jewel College, Rodney Smith is a graduate adjunct professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Education where he teaches courses addressing racial and ethnic diversity and cultural understanding.

He also published a book, “Are We Really Crabs in a Barrel: The Truth and Other Insights About the African American Community,” as well as a chapter in an anthology entitled “The Trayvon Martin in U.S.: An American Tragedy.”

Both events may be streamed on WVU-P’s Facebook page (wvup.edu/live) and YouTube channel (youtube.com/wvuparkersburg).

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