The African American Culture Club
Finding your roots
February 10, 2017
Understanding one’s culture is a big part of how people discover their true identity. The African American Culture Club (AAC), created by senior Angel Walls, is a club designed specifically to help students explore the African American culture. AAC meets every Wednesday at lunch in room D-9. Meetings are open to anyone who wishes to come and learn about multiple cultures.
“I started the club because I felt like there needed to be more awareness among learning more about the African American culture besides what we already know here,” said president of AAC, Angel Walls. Angel saw a need and she solved it by creating a club that she is extremely passionate about.
“I like to just get together with people and learning new stuff. When I didn’t have it [the club] I always used to go to different club meetings even though I wasn’t a part of them. I used to walk in just because I wanted to learn something new,” said Angel, who started AAC for the specific purpose of encouraging people to explore where they come from, as well as about where other people come from.
“I hope they walk away with the knowledge of: if they’re African American, their roots, and if they’re not, if they’re a different race, hopefully they learn about other races,” said Angel. It is important to be able to understand where people come from, especially in this country where such a diverse community requires stepping into someone else’s shoes to understand them. AAC does this, and the meetings help promote pride in the African American culture.
“During the club meeting we talk about issues, and sometimes we have guest speakers, like Mr. Lamar came and talked. But mostly we do interactive games to get them thinking about cultures, not just the African American culture, but all cultures,” said Angel. It is important to make club meetings interesting, that way students can easily engage and participate in the activities. Although Angel places an emphasis on the AFrican American culture, she highly encourages learning about all cultures.
“Like all the clubs at OHHS, AAC is important because it provides an outlet for students to meet, bond and associate ‘fun’ with their academic journeys,” said club advisor and teacher Dominique English. AAC is a place where students can grow with experiences and new knowledge of the world around them. However, Angel has experienced some difficulties in starting the club.
“There’s difficulties because the Hip-Hop Dance Club is part of AAC, so it’s hard sometimes when people come in and they don’t know the difference. They just think it’s the hip-hop, but it’s not just about hip-hop. It’s about more than that. It’s about history,” said Angel. AAC and the Hip-Hop Dance club are combined because of the major influence of African American’s on the creation of Hip-Hop, but Angel does not want students to forget about the real purpose of AAC, to grow students’ understanding of the people in the world around them.
As AAC continues to grow, Angel hopes that the club will help to begin “raising awareness. Opening people’s eyes to besides what they see on TV. A more positive light of the African American culture.” Angel has hope that the club will continue to grow and attract students even after she graduates. Feel free to stop by at lunch on a Wednesday in room D-9 to experience the African American culture. This month, as people all over the nation recognize and celebrate Black HIstory Month, Angel encourages us all to “try to learn something new about the African American culture during Black History Month.”