The Lewis and Gaines Center for Inclusion and Equity sponsors a variety of cultural and social activities. By doing so we promote awareness of, as well as demonstrate appreciation for, racial and ethnic diversity. LGCIE activities are open to all Bridgewater State University students who wish to acknowledge and celebrate our diverse community.
This event is an opportunity for multicultural clubs to showcase their clubs to first year students and for upperclasspersons to share in their first year experience. Multicultural student organizations host a fair-like atmosphere by setting up informational booths around the perimeter of the RSU ballroom. During the second half of the event, returning undergraduates engage in a panel discussion to share their stories and answer any questions about student life. Light hors d'oeuvres are provided.
Black History Month
LGCIE hosts a banquet every February in honor of Black History Month. Students offer an array of activities to showcase the history of African American icons through music, videos, stories and dance. Every year, the BSU community as a whole comes out to engage in the festivities in grand fashion.
Kente Cloth Ceremony
The Kente Cloth Ceremony is a time-honored, graduation tradition at Bridgewater State University in which culture and scholarship are honored on behalf of undergraduate and graduate degree recipients. On occasions such as this, our graduates receive a Kente Cloth stole, which is representative of their ethnicity and a Bridgewater State University pin, that signifies the life-long relationship that exists among alumni across our nation and throughout the world.
Kente is a hand-woven fabric, commonly prepared by members of the Asante and Ewe tribes in Ghana, West Africa. During the 11th century, Ota Karaban and Kwaku Ameyaw developed the process of preparing Kente by watching a spider weave its web. Historically, Kente Cloth was only worn on special and sacred occasions by nobles and royalty. The attainment of a college degree is truly a sacred occasion that is worthy of celebration by all.
Across the nation, African American students of color graduating from majority population institutions adopted the practice of wearing Kente Cloth stoles at graduations from their peers at Historically Black Colleges and Universities. The Kente Cloth stole has become a symbol of unity and scholarship that binds students to their community, to their institution and to a considerable network of scholars. Faithfully mindful of our mission to celebrate diversity and promote inclusiveness, the Lewis and Gaines Center for Inclusion and Equity offers a variety of Kente Cloth stoles which serve to represent our many cultures.
LGCIE celebrates this African American tradition at the end of the fall semester. Students, faculty and staff share a wonderful dinner and engage in activities that celebrate Nguzo Saba which are the seven principles of Kwanzaa. The principles evoke community, love and cultural traditions that allow us to celebrate together as one.
Celebrating Passover by hosting a seder is a long-standing tradition of the LGCIE and Middle East Studies. Faculty, staff and students enjoy a traditional seder meal with a guest rabbi to perform the ritual.