Posted by By:Destiny Vincent (President of AACC) on 6/16/2023 8:15:00 AM

    What is Juneteenth?

    June 17th, we celebrate Freedom Day, Emancipation Day, Liberation Day, Jubilee Day, and how most know it as Juneteenth. A holiday that is part of African American history along with Black History Month and other days that represent our heritage. Barack Obama once said “Juneteenth has never been a celebration of victory or an acceptance of the way things are. It’s a celebration of progress. It’s an affirmation that despite the most painful parts of our history, chage is possible - and there is still so much work to do.” Did you know a lot of people don’t know what Juneteenth is? Many see it as another holiday that they get off like other religious holidays and don’t realize the purpose behind it. 

    As you know Juneteenth took place June 19, 1865. Without having a clue of what to do African Americans had been held enslaved for hundreds of years and all of a sudden someone says they’re a freeman. Most families had been separated from each other. Husbands had been ripped away from their wives and mothers were forced to watch their children get taken away by unknown people. African Americans weren't even allowed to grow intellectually or in any other way. Can you imagine not having your own last name or the ability to read or write? All they knew was work, produce children and continue that cycle. Juneteenth is a day to commnemorate the emancipation of enslaved African Americans in the United States. 

    But Juneteenth wasn't just handed to us or given due to the signing of the Emancipation Proclamation but our ancestors who fought for it for hundreds of years and still tried to grow themselves in the process. 

    For example, Jamelle Bouie, an African American columnist, once said, “Emancipation wasn’t a gift bestowed on the slaves; it was something they took for themselves, the culmination of their long struggle for freedom, which began as soon as chattel slavery was established in the 17th century, and gained even greater steam with the Revolution and the birth of a country committed, at least rhetorically, to freedom and equality. In the fighting that struggles, black Americans would open up new vistas of democratic possibility for the entire country.”

    But how does this relate to Juneteenth? Juneteenth is important to Black Culture. It represents a part of our roots that isn't discussed much in society. A day that represents a life-altering, generational change that would impact those to come. 

    Juneteenth teaches me to love my history, respect my history, and learn to share and teach it. To carry and store away this history is a crime but to share it with the world even when others aren't listening is a blessing. We lift our voices and sing about a long overdue national holiday stemming from our enslaved ancestors. To have a past that we can learn from and look back to is so inspiring and motivating, pushing us forward to create a better future for ourselves. To prove what our ancestors believed, we could do, we can do, and we are doing it! Black excellence is thriving and we only continue to improve daily.

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  • Kwanzaa Celebration

    Posted by Makenzie Sutton (Co-President of AACC) on 2/8/2023 4:00:00 PM

    A people without the knowledge of their past history, origin and culture is like a tree without roots.” -Marcus Garvey 


    On December 20, 2022, the African American Culture Club hosted a Kwanzaa celebration that featured the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble. The African American Culture club had the privilege of learning about the rich history and tradition of Kwanzaa. The African American Culture club acquired knowledge of traditional African dances, African songs, and intensified African drumming. Kwanzaa celebrations often include storytelling, poetry reading, singing, dancing, African drumming, and feasting. The African American Culture club gained an understanding of the seven historic principles of Kwanzaa, which are Umoja (unity), Kujichagulia (self-determination), Ujima (collective work and responsibility), Ujamaa (cooperative economics), Nia (purpose), Kuumba (creativity), and Imani (faith). A member of the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble talked about the creator of Kwanzaa, Maulana Ndabezitha Karenga, and why Kwanzaa is the epitome of African culture and represents unification and solidity in the African American community. A few of the African American Culture Club members had the opportunity to learn some traditional African dances on the auditorium stage as well. The art of choreography and expression through dancing has been in most African tribes for a long period of time. The Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble had a large table with seven Kwanzaa candles, decorative food, and a big Kwanzaa flag. This table provided a visual to the audience and represented African heritage and culture. 

    After the Universal African Dance and Drum Ensemble finished their performance, all of the African American Culture Club members, faculty, and other Lenape students were able to enjoy a delectable meal in the North Cafe. This meal consisted of mac and cheese, fried chicken, baked ziti, rice, green beans, and much more! Kwanzaa Celebration Flyer7 Days of KwanzaaKwanzaa AACC Group Picture

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  • Dedication to Mr. German

    Posted by Stacy Williams (Co-Advisor of AACC) on 2/6/2023 9:00:00 AM

    Mr. German,

    We miss you so much. It was an honor to co-advise the African American Club with you back in 2020 and I will forever cherish the memories now. 

    Thank you for showing us the way to lead the African American Club. You would be so proud of how far we've come. Mr. Swindell and I are so grateful for how you groomed the members to be great leaders within and out of Lenape. We will only continue to get better!

    We miss your laugh, your smile, your deep thoughts of clarity. I will never forget your comment to our club during one of our rehearsals for the fashion show. Which would also turn into our last encounter. You enjoyed the playlist we were playing. You enjoyed it so much you mentioned playing it during your next class period. Before you exited the door, you turned and looked me in my eyes and said, "Mrs. Williams, you're doing a great job. If you think no one is seeing it, we are." I pondered your response, as that never crossed my mind... It blessed my heart when the club decided to dedicate the fashion show to you, as your students and members miss you dearly.

    Mr. German, we saw you and will continue to see you. We saw your efforts, your heart, and compassion. The African American Culture Club is a reflection of your heart and always will be. Fly high, just like an eagle, sour my friend! You are forever in our hearts. ~ AACC


    Mr. Luis German

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  • HBCU College Fair Trip

    Posted by Written by Destiny Vincent - President of the African American Culture Club on 11/27/2022

    On November 14, 2022, some members of the African American Culture Club and other students boarded a bus heading to The Malcolm Bernard HBCU College Fair held at Rowan University. There, students were able to enter a giant room with multiple HBCU colleges and universities. Some of those colleges and universities are Spelman College, Tuskegee University, North Carolina A&T University, Alabama A&M University and so many more! A couple of members from the club expressed their pleasure in attending the fair. 

    “My experience on the trip was new to me seeing as I’m a freshman. I enjoyed the tour and learning about college life, the restrictions and the opportunities they give to college students. I would recommend it to anyone in high school because you might find the future college that you want to go to.” - Isha Fofanah 26’


    “My trip experience was nice. It was fun going around touring the college and speaking to others from different HBCUs. It got me excited and inspired to start planning for college. They helped me realize what I could possibly major in. I also liked the free food they gave us, it was nice.” - Jada Garret 25’


    “I really enjoyed the trip. My mom is an HBCU Alumni (Hampton University) so it was cool to see the kinds of schools that she fell in love with while on her college search, and it helped me create a good list of what I should look for in colleges. I also got the chance to talk to others in my major of interest, which was also cool! I would recommend this experience day for any student who is looking to learn more about culture, is planning on attending an HBCU, or seniors who are getting ready to start exploring!” - Rachel Lawrence 24’


    “I had a great time at the HBCU trip. I think there were many great schools that provided me with tons of information and insight. Many of them had great opportunities and circumstances that would be beneficial to the students who were interested. I would recommend this to someone because I believe it is important to keep your options open when looking for colleges. And having representatives from the schools allows students to get some sort of understanding of the experience.” - Elvanie Tamwo 24’


    After attending the fair the students went to a seminar hosted by employees from Deloitte and other places. The speakers were able to talk a little about their backgrounds and what they like to do in their free time. One speaker, Thalia Smith, a partner at Deloitte, talked about her journey from coming from a low-income family to where she is now making 6 to 7 figures. In the seminar, students learned about accounting and what business careers could fit them. Students were also told to think about how they wanted to be in 10 years. Throughout the presentation, the speakers were very active with the students asking them questions and laughing all together. After the amazing seminar, the students took a little break and headed to a designated spot where they would meet their two tour guides for a tour around Rowan University.

    During the Rowan University tour, students were able to experience what it was like being a student at Rowan. Students visited studying areas in the school, “the food court”, and even got into a real dorm room! After the tour from the amazing tour guides who were able to answer just about every question and give more information, the students got to have free lunch. Students were able to choose from ranging foods like chicken strips and fries, Spanish rice, desserts, and so much more!

    After the delicious lunch, the students hopped back on the bus and returned to Lenape laughing and enjoying each other's company.

    Thank you to The Malcolm Bernard HBCU College Fair for having the African American Culture Club at the fair and to Rowan University for a great tour and its tour guides. This trip was a great way for students to learn about more HBCUs they may have never heard of and even get a feeling of what it's like to go on a college tour. Many members have expressed their excitement for the next trip and AACC has so many more exciting events coming up. LET’S GO AACC!!!!!

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