Hopewell High celebrates black history
By Caitlin Davis, Senior Staff Writer
Mar 1, 2013, 13:22
photo by Caitlin Davis The choral group, Female Intuition, along with staff members performed a melody of songs from Aretha Franklin at the Black History Month Assembly on Wednesday morning at Hopewell High School.
HOPEWELL — In the final days of Black History Month, students at Hopewell High School held an assembly Wednesday morning to honor the past, present and future of Black History Month through song, dance and sign language.
The assembly, with the theme “History in the Making,” featured the vocal talents of Isaac Holmes Jr., a substitute teacher, a melody of songs from Aretha Franklin performed by the group Female Intuition, which included a mix of faculty and students, and a performance from the Mixed Ensemble, a choral group at the high school.
photo by Caitlin Davis Isaac Holmes Jr., a substitute teacher, sings a tune during the assembly.
Students also reached out and honored a local resident who has made his mark on black history, the Rev. Dr. Curtis W. Harris. Harris, the first African American to serve as mayor for the city, was presented with the Lifetime Achiever Award at the assembly.
While much of the assembly focused on the past of Black History Month, Vice Mayor Jasmine Gore and Del. Rosalyn Dance, D-63, reminded the students in the auditorium that they were the future of Black History Month.
photo by Caitlin Davis Vice-Mayor Jasmine Gore speaks at the assembly.
“Success isn’t something that comes overnight,” said Gore, a 2004 graduate of HHS. “It takes time and hard work and determination. It is something that can’t be bought or traded ... success is always something that comes as a result of a goal because it means you finished something you planned to do.”
Gore also encouraged the students to think of other leaders in black history, apart from those taught in the classroom.
“I would like to encourage all of you to look outside of those history books and to look for other African Americans leaders that you can look up to and admire,” Gore said, giving example of Oprah Winfrey and the CEO of McDonald’s, Donald Thompson.
photo by Caitlin Davis The Rev. Dr. Curtis W. Harris was presented with the Lifetime Achiever Award.
Dance then took the stage and told the students she struggled to get where she is today, that those in history, such as Martin Luther King Jr., help shape black history for future generations.
“Each of you here today represent a possibility of history in the making,” Dance said.
Dance, who grew up as one of 11 children, recalled for the students that growing up she was not focused on making a future for herself, she was instead focused on making sure she had food for lunch.
photo by Caitlin Davis The Sign Language Club on stage at the assembly.
It was from that experience of growing up with very little that Dance became a delegate and is able to hold a seat at the General Assembly.
“Each of us have a story to tell. Each of us have history to make,” Dance said. “We are each collectively history in the making. It is what we chose to do from this day forward.”
photo by Caitlin Davis The Hopewell High School Jazz Band performs at the assembly.
The assembly also included a salute to Motown performed by the Elite Men group, which included faculty, a musical selection by the jazz band, readings by members of the Forensics Club, a musical selection performed by student Makiah Spratley and members of the faculty and a performance by the Sign Language Club.
photo by Caitlin Davis Students showcased their talents at the Black History Month assembly on Wednesday morning.