Juneteenth in San Jose

Colleagues,

We want to wish all of you a happy Juneteenth. Juneteenth commemorates the emancipation of Black Americans on June 19th, when freedom was proclaimed for the remaining enslaved people of Texas, the last state of the Confederacy with institutional slavery. 

The National Museum of African American History & Culture (NMAAHC) has an excellent article about the 150+ year history of Juneteenth, complete with a suggested reading list and resources for discussing the history and importance of Juneteenth with young people. In 2021, Juneteenth was finally consecrated as a federal holiday

Various Juneteenth events are happening right here in our local downtown community this weekend. The African American Community Service Agency’s Juneteenth in the Streets culminates with a festival on South First Street. The Children’s Discovery Museum is hosting a celebration and film festival. If you have time, it’s an excellent opportunity to attend an event with your family and friends. The San Jose Public Library exhibit “Black Spartans,” represents ongoing research from right here on campus about the Black experience throughout SJSU history. Select portraits are on display at local branches, but you can explore the full exhibit online right now. 

While our country still has much to address and progress is slow, Juneteenth is a celebration of how far we’ve come and the impact we can have when we are united. As the NMAAHC article puts it, “The historical legacy of Juneteenth shows the value of never giving up hope in uncertain times.” 

Best Regards,

The SJSU IT Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee

Bob Lim Maggie Panahi Ryan Campbell
Cindy Scher-Hereth Matthew Loo Tino Cruz
Kara Li Norma Brown Willie Simon

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