Pan African Club celebrates Black history month



Club members Joseph Stewart (12), Angel Ishmeal (9), A’Ziya Wills (12), Jamison Joyner (12) and Kierston Connor (12) (from left to right) line up after their biweekly Pan African Club meeting. The club of diverse students meets to discuss art, culture, and recent news in a safe and welcoming space provided by Ms. Davis, the AP African American History teacher.

Poetry, music, dance. The Pan African Club, which comes together biweekly to support and celebrate Black culture, is gracing the Sparta stage this February to celebrate Black History month. Presidents A’Ziya Wills (12) and Joseph Stewart (12) have created a welcoming and companionable atmosphere for club members to come together and discuss art, culture and general interests.

The Pan African Club, PAC, has been a part of White Station’s club collection for many years and has performed their African American History Program annually at the end of February. The program celebrates culture and art while informing students of what the historic month is all about.

“[We have a very supportive club],” Jamison Joyner (12) said. “We have a good club where we talk about African American celebrations and culture. A lot of the people [in the club] are friends and [Rachel] Davis really brings us together since all of us know her. We all are pretty talkative and we are comfortable with each other … [as members] we write out ideas and put in our input to try and help plan, especially with the African American History program.”

The PAC works hard to involve everyone into the conversation. Club sponsor and AP African American History teacher Davis is the glue bringing the club together. She started the Black History program several years ago and is working to bring it back this February. 

“The program is always the last school day of February and is during school,” Wills said. “We have one program for 9th and 10th grade in the morning and 11th and 12th grade in the afternoon … [we are performing] different poems if we find something or music and different ideas within the program so that it stays fun and interesting for the students since it is the first one in a few years.”

Not only is the PAC aspiring to educate the student body, but also its members. Every club meeting is meant to recognize culture and history within White Station High School and its diverse student population. 

“For the most part, I would say we focus on all aspects of being Black and try to speak about culture, history and a little bit of everything,” Wills said. “Our club is meant to acknowledge and educate not only Black students, we have members who are not people of color, but to engulf the students in African culture.”