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Black History Month: Amanda Gorman

Black History Month is an annual celebration of achievements by African Americans and a time for recognizing their central role in U.S. history. Also known as African American History Month, the event’s origins trace back to historian Carter G. Woodson and other prominent African Americans. Since 1976, every U.S. president has officially designated the month of February as Black History Month. Other countries worldwide, including Canada and the United Kingdom, also devote a month to celebrating Black history.

In February, Zane State College will acknowledge the achievements and contributions of African Americans throughout history and the current day.

Amanda Gorman

Amanda Gorman was born and raised in Los Angeles. She is the author of the poetry book “The One for Whom Food Is Not Enough” (2015). She attended New Roads in Santa Monica and Harvard University, where she graduated cum laude with a degree in sociology. Her art and activism focus on issues of oppression, feminism, race, and marginalization, as well as the African diaspora.

In 2014 Gorman was named the first Youth Poet Laureate of Los Angeles, and in 2017 was named the first US National Youth Poet Laureate. She has performed at many prominent venues, including the Obama White House, the Library of Congress, Lincoln Center, and on CBS This Morning. She has received a Genius Grant from OZY Media, as well as recognition from Scholastic Inc., YoungArts, the Glamour magazine College Women of the Year Awards, and the Webby Awards. She has written for the New York Times newsletter The Edit and penned the manifesto for Nike’s 2020 Black History Month campaign. Gorman is the recipient of the Poets & Writers Barnes & Noble Writers for Writers Award, and is the youngest board member of 826 National, the largest youth writing network in the United States. She has two books forthcoming from Penguin Random House.

Gorman is the founder of a non-profit organization called One Pen One Page, which runs a youth writing and leadership program. In early 2021, she was selected by president-elect Joe Biden to read her original poem, “The Hill We Climb” at his inauguration. She lives in Los Angeles (source).

To watch Amanda’s Inaugural Poem reading, click here.

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