Dear Members of the Canisius Community –
In the wake of the violent massacre that tore our Eastside community apart earlier this month, our support of and involvement with Juneteenth takes on particular meaning this year. While we continue to pray for those whose lives were lost and for the families and friends affected by grief, this is among our campus community’s opportunities to take action through education, conversation and service.
The 2nd annual Juneteenth Celebration at Canisius College will be held on Wednesday, June 15, 2022. All faculty, staff and students are invited to share in a day of solidarity in honor of our African American community. The event begins at 11:45 a.m. in the Science Hall Commons with lunch and concludes with a dessert reception and performance by Vibrant Strings at 4:30 p.m. All are welcomed and encouraged to participate, and we ask that you please RSVP by Thursday, June 9. Click here to RSVP.
Juneteenth commemorates the anniversary of the date when news of emancipation finally reached most enslaved African Americans in Texas, and Canisius is proud to honor this day. It was on June 19, 1865, when Maj. Gen. Gordon Granger along with more than 1,800 federal troops, arrived in Galveston, TX, to take control of the state from the Confederate rebellion, nearly two months after the war’s last major battle. Gen. Granger issued an order confirming the freedom promised in President Abraham Lincoln’s 1863 Emancipation Proclamation and denied them by the Confederate government. Only through the 13th Amendment, ratified six months later in December of 1865, did emancipation put an end to slavery in all of the United States, not just in the areas once occupied by the Confederate army.
In collaboration with Juneteenth Inc. of Buffalo, Canisius will have an opportunity to hear from the organization’s leaders and participate in service projects throughout the city of Buffalo, including clean-up efforts in Hamlin Park and other designated locations identified by Juneteenth. Canisius’ Juneteenth celebration hopes to inspire conversation, action and hope in our ongoing work toward anti-racism, diversity and inclusion.
Members of the college community are also invited to attend activities held throughout the month including the Sanfoka Days, (May 29 – June 16) and the Mafaa Memorial, June 21, 6:00 p.m., Broderick Park . For more details on events and opportunities to volunteer for the city of Buffalo Juneteenth Celebration, please click here.
Resources on the history and celebrations of Juneteenth are also available below:
- Juneteenth of Buffalo, Inc.
- 1619 Project
- Nikole Hannah-Jones discusses 1619 Project
- PBS African Americans: Many Rivers to Cross
- Shennette Garrett-Scott, 150th Anniversary of the Emancipation Proclamation
- Festivals of freedom: memory and meaning in African American emancipation celebrations, 1808-1915
- National Juneteenth Observance Foundation
The Office of Human Resources also invites members of the campus to participate in the Buffalo Niagara Partnership Diversity & Inclusion Symposium, Thursday, June 16 from 10:15 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. This unique event delivers the ongoing learning necessary in the D&I realm in a one-day virtual format that is filled with inspirational discussions and non-stop knowledge. The event is open to all faculty and staff. To register for this online event, please use the link below and select tickets. You will be choosing the first line that states D&I Symposium Corporate Pass RSVP.
Submitted by: Bethany Voorhees, executive associate, President’s Office