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January 20, 2006

Smith College President on the 'Hot Seat'

President Carol T. Christ, speaker Tim Wise and slam poet Mayda del Valle are among those featured in Smith's celebration of February as National Black History Month.

NORTHAMPTON, Mass.—Smith College President Carol T. Christ volunteered to be on the “Hot Seat” ethics panel as part of a slate of activities marking Black History Month. Along with another administrator, faculty member and student, Christ will field audience questions on the topics of class and privilege.

Christ will be joined by Mentha Hynes, associate dean of multicultural affairs; Pat Skarda, professor of English language and literature; and Yamama Raza, senior student, in taking questions at 12:15 p.m. on Friday, Feb. 17, in Campus Center 103-104.

Begun in 2002, the “Hot Seat” discussions provide a regular forum for discussing thorny moral and ethical issues in a lively, informal lunchtime setting.

The “Hot Seat” and all of the events listed below are free and open to the public.

Feb. 20-24

The Minority Association of Pre-Med Students (MAPS) and Union of Underrepresented Science Students (UUSS) will sponsor activities devoted to recognizing the contributions minorities have made to the sciences throughout the week. Posters with the profiles of accomplished minority scientists from the fields of biology, medicine, physics, engineering, mathematics, chemistry and psychology will be advertised around the campus. Quiz cards with historical facts pertaining to one of the aforementioned scientific fields will be distributed to students. Friday Feb. 24, the week will end with games, trivia and prizes in the Campus Center.

Saturday, Feb. 4

Performance by slam poet Mayda del Valle. The youngest poet and first Latina to become “Slam Champion” at the internationally respected Nuyorican Poet’s Café, del Valle has performed before numerous audiences. She appeared in the Tony award-winning Russell Simmons Def Poetry Jam on Broadway, at more than 80 colleges, the Lincoln Center, and on VH1. 8 p.m., Campus Center Carroll Room

Friday, Feb. 10

Lecture by Tim Wise, prominent writer and activist on the issue of white privilege in the United States. Wise, director of the Association for White Anti-Racist Education (AWARE) and author of “White Like Me: Reflections of Race from a Privileged Son,” served as a 2005 adjunct faculty member in the Smith College School for Social Work. 3 p.m. Wright Hall auditorium

Friday, Feb. 24

Keynote address by renowned poet and essayist Nikki Giovanni and journalist and author Paula Giddings for the New England regional conference “The New Black Reality: Interrogating Love and Tradition,” organized by the Black Students Alliance. For conference information, visit 7:30 p.m., John M. Greene Auditorium

The following Black History Month event, which is co-sponsored by Smith, is taking place at Hampshire College:

Tuesday, Feb. 7

Screening of “The Untold Story of Emmett Louis Till,” a documentary investigating the murder and subsequent injustice surrounding the death of 14-year-old Emmett Louis Till in Chicago in 1955. Many consider this case to be the true catalyst for the American Civil Rights Movement. Meet the film's director, Keith Beauchamp, and view this ground-breaking documentary that was the impetus for reopening the investigation into the murder of Emmett Louis Till. 6:30 p.m., Main Lecture Hall, Franklin Patterson Hall, Hampshire College

For more information, go to:

Office of College Relations
Smith College
Garrison Hall
Northampton, Massachusetts 01063

Marti Hobbes
News Assistant
T (413) 585-2190
F (413) 585-2174

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