Christmas Events at NDNU by Jessica Beltran

Kwanzaa will be hosted by Black Student Union on December 8th, in the NDNU quad. They are sharing their Christmas traditions with the students and staff of NDNU. Kwanzaa is normally a week-long celebration honoring Africa heritage in African-American culture. It originally starts on December 26- January 1. According to The Official Kwanzaa Website, “It is culminated in a feast and gift-giving. Kwanzaa has sever core principles, Umoji, Kujichagulia, Ujima, Ujamaa, Nia, Kuumba, and Imani. Each of the seven days of Kwanzaa is dedicated to one of the following principles, as follows. Umoji means Unity, to strive for and to maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race. Kujichagulia means Self-Determination, to define and name ourselves, as well as to create and speak for ourselves. Ujima means Collective Work and Responsibility, to build and maintain our community together and make our brothers and sisters problems our problems and solve them together. Ujamaa means Cooperative Economics, to build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses and to profit from them together. Nia means Purpose, to make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness. Kuumba means Creativity, to do always as much as we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it. Imani means Faith, to believe with all our hearts in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.”

Black Student Union Treasure Stephen Taylor said,” It is an event to teach unity through a span of African celebrations. It is usually after Christmas, but we are doing it now that all the students are on campus since Christmas break is coming up. Another reason we are sharing our Christmas tradition with our NDNU community is because it is a good way to teach another part of African culture. We will be learning and celebrating all the candles on one day, December 8th. The event will be led by Kemya, but students know her as Sister Kemya. She is teaching us how Kwanzaa symbolizes unity originally used in pan Africanism, but also through all African descendants. Some can see it being similar to Hanukah due to the candles, but the group of candles represent the unity of Africa. The candles are divided into three groups; Red: means the blood and struggle of the people, Green: the hope and future for the people, and Black: the people. It will be a fun and interactive event that will allow other NDNU students to get a look into our culture and traditions.”

Jalen Young Senior at NDNU said, “As an African American student who does not usually participate in BSU events, I will find myself patriating in the Kwanzaa event. It is a way to show our traditions and I am happy that BSU is sharing this event with the entire school. Hopefully a lot of different ethnic students can show up and allow themselves to learn a new culture and different Christmas traditions.”

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