Dallas College News Update


Jim Schutze, author of "The Accommodation"

Media Contact: Debra Dennis; DDennis@DallasCollege.edu

For immediate release — Feb. 2, 2022

(DALLAS) — Dallas College is celebrating the rich and diverse cultures of Black Americans with a month-long celebration this Black History Month. February is traditionally a time to recognize the achievements, excellence and history of Black Americans as indelible contributors to American culture.

It is also a time for reflection and demonstrated commitment as Dallas College joins in honoring Black History Month’s 2023 national theme: “Black Resistance.”​

“February will be about Black resistance, perseverance and the journey of triumph,” said Dr. Jasmine Parker, senior director of diversity, equity and inclusion at Dallas College. “We honor both perseverance and rest as forms of resistance and what people need in order to thrive. Sometimes when people look at Black History Month, they look at the struggle but not the journey to a more just society. Prioritizing mental health, well-being and balance addresses a national push for equity and social justice advocacy.”

The keynote for this year’s Black history activities at Dallas College is noted Dallas political journalist Jim Schutze, the author of “The Accommodation” — a treatise on the history of race in Dallas. His lecture and intimate conversation, “The Accommodation: Journey to Triumph​​​​,” will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 15, at Cedar Valley Campus, Building H, 3030 N. Dallas Ave., Lancaster, Texas, with a virtual option for those who can’t attend in person.

Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price

​Dallas County Commissioner John Wiley Price will join Schutze for a discussion about the politics of race and Dallas’ historic and systemic racial divide. Schutze, who worked for the Dallas Times Herald and the Dallas Observer, originally published “The Accommodation” in 1987. Price, a noted civil rights leader and a commissioner since 1985, wrote the forward for the book’s 2021 re-release.

Dr. Parker will moderate the discussion, and a question-and-answer period will follow.

“We hope this offering produces transparent conversations and culturally based learning opportunities in our classrooms, workspaces and other facets of life as we commit to a more inclusive path forward,” Parker said.

Copies of “The Accommodation” will be available for those who attend the live presentation. This event is supported by the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and the offices of the Dallas College campus presidents along with Big D Reads Foundation. To attend in person or virtually, you must pre-register.

Black History Month also brings the opportunity to not just celebrate achievements but to advocate for healing and creating access to good mental health. “Nap In: Rest as Resistance” is scheduled for Wednesday, Feb. 22, from noon to 1:30 p.m. This event is sponsored by the Multicultural Affairs Office and will be held virtually.

Counselors at Dallas College are pushing back against the stigma that mental health care is admission of weakness.

“Everything we do is about how we take care of ourselves,” said Dr. Curtis Hill, a licensed counselor at Dallas College Cedar Valley Campus. “Rest is a mental health resource. This is about the quality of life — even more so for people of color. You have the societal challenges of seeking help, but there are people who will not see a counselor.”

He applauds Dallas College for taking the lead and setting up counseling hubs at each campus.

“Our mental health is grounded in stress, anxiety and depression. It’s not just police violence. We understand what a microaggression is. It’s a small way of belittling. For a young person, that can be overwhelming,” he said. “Microaggressions can reduce someone to isolation and depression and undermine their self-confidence.”

But optimal mental health care is available and can become a way of life, Hill said.

“This is an important moment to focus on balance and good mental health. Your life matters, and so does your mental health. Erasing the stigma around mental health allows people to become whole and should be as common as going to a doctor for physical ailments. We honor rest,” he said.

For a list of all Black History Month events at Dallas College, please visit the African American/Black History Month events calendar at Dallas College.

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