Black History Month Views Ursinus History in the 1970s

An eclectic mix of performances, lectures, presentations and discussions marked Black History Month at Ursinus College. Programs included a talk by 2009 Ursinus graduate Jennifer Thompkins, who received a Master of Theological Studies from Harvard; a talk by Biology Professor Rebecca Roberts, on “environmental racism;”  a poetry slam; a jazz ensemble; a session on health care delivery and a talk by former Ursinus music professor Anthony Branker, now at Princeton University, on the future of jazz.

The events culminated last week with Ursinus alumnae Deborah Bumbry and Carol Clark Lawrence, both Class of 1973, two of the College’s first African American female graduates, who hosted an informal discussion on “Ursinus in the ‘70s.” Bumbry is a retired middle-school teacher, and Clark Lawrence, an Ursinus Trustee, is a Senior Vice President at PNC Bank.

“To have the first African American women graduates as the culmination of  Black History Month events was a great experience for those who were present,” said Paulette Patton, Director of Multicultural Services. “ Students felt humbled and honored to meet the women who were trailblazers at Ursinus in the ’70’s.”

Photos are by Rodolfo Coplin 2013.