What is Pan-Afrikan Festival? Many call it the black homecoming, while others see it as just another black social event. In my eyes Pan-Afrikan is a time for the black students that don’t have the same kind of black connection that they would have at a Historically Black College and University to all come together and remember that it is possible to have at a predominately white institution. As a freshmen coming to N.C. State I was worried about not having that secure feeling about my culture or not having black friends because N.C. State is a PWI. With this said Pan-Afrikan Festival and other things that the Black Students Board has done over the past year has made me realize just how sound the black community is at state.
Since I am a freshman I have not had the chance to experience Pan-Afrikan like many of the upperclassmen that have this year to compare to many others. When I asked “how did you feel bout Pan-Afrikan this year compared to other years, and what could be done to make it better in the future?”, senior Gabriel Ross responded “maybe more activities about Pan-African. People pay too much attention on the step show and not the culture. In addition, the lack of white people. These events actually promote the separation of race. in my opinion.”
Ross does have a valid point, but the question of if Pan-Afrikan Festival should be made for all cultures is then put at hand. Would the N.C. State African-American community really be okay with sharing something that has been known to bring the black community together with the white community as well. Some people feel like there needs to be a few changes made to Pan-Afrikan such as a concert along with the step show, and comedy show. Others feel like more events about the culture it’s self need to be added to Pan-Afrikan. The most talked about event was definitely the step show as well as the comedy show.
The Pan-Afrikan events this year had an overall good turn out. By looking at the students on campus with Pan-Afrikan shirts a good number of people attended the events. It was greatly anticipated and it is sad to see that it is over. The African-American students cannot wait until next year for the next Pan-Afrikan. If you have any ideas about what can be changed to make the events better or things that need to be changed overall then make sure that you attend the BSB meetings and let your voice be heard for what you would like to see happen in the future!