Fresno State honors the diversity of its student body, faculty and staff during the month of February with a variety of virtual events celebrating Black History Month. 

Keynote speaker Angelica McKinley joins Fresno State’s Black History Month Kick-Off event on Feb. 1, sharing insights about her unconventional journey as an African American woman in visual storytelling and media. In conversation with students and the community, McKinley will discuss her childhood love of art and history and how it led to a creative career in art direction and design with Google Doodles, Apple, The New York Times and more. 

With the expansion of design’s influence in media, business and technology, opportunities for unorthodox creative skills have skyrocketed. McKinley will highlight how she navigated the hurdles of her career and translated many of her non-traditional strengths into skills that businesses value. 

Here is a listing of public Fresno State events throughout the month-long celebration:

  • Black History Month Kick-Off, presented by the Cross Cultural and Gender Center African American Programs and Services, noon-1 p.m. Feb. 1, featuring keynote speaker Angelica McKinley, art director and designer for innovative companies like Google, Apple and The New York Times. Pre-registration is required.
  • Black History Month Virtual Celebration, presented by the Cross Cultural and Gender Center African American Programs and Service, 6:30 p.m. Feb. 1, including prizes, music, games and will feature special guest DJ Zhenron of 90.5 KSJS Ground Zero Radio. Pre-registration is required. 
  • Real Talk: Mental Health, noon Feb. 2, part of the “Real Talk,” discussion series hosted by Cross Cultural and Gender Center’s African American Programs and Services. Led by counselor Zafar Sumler of the Student Health and Counseling Center, this guided discussion will focus on stigmas, barriers and solutions surrounding mental health. Sumler will share tips for practicing self-care. Register here.  
  • Sistah to Sistah, led by the Cross Cultural and Gender Center African American Programs and Services, noon Wednesdays beginning Feb. 3. This discussion group provides a safe space for Black and African American women to connect and build community while discussing relevant and current topics. Open to students, staff, faculty and the community. Click here to attend. 
  • Conversations that Matter, held by the President’s Council on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, noon-1:15 p.m. Feb. 4 and 18. These conversations focus on issues of social justice, diversity, inclusion and other current and relevant issues facing campus and society. Open to all Fresno State students, faculty, staff. Register here.
  • Barbershop Talk, led by the Cross Cultural and Gender Center’s African American Programs and Services, 5 p.m. Feb. 8 and 22. This discussion group provides a safe space for Black and African American men. Register here
  • Identity in Shades with Shämir Káli Griffin, celebrate Black History Month with author Shämir Káli Griffin. This two-part event deals with Griffin’s experience with his African American, American Indian and LGBTQ+ identities. Part 1, “Identity in Shades,” noon-1 p.m. Feb. 9, register here. Part 2, “In-Depth with Shämir Káli Griffin,” 5:30-7 p.m. Feb. 11, register here. For more information, contact American Indian Programs and Services at
  • Racial Healing Circles, presented by the Cross Cultural and Gender Center African American Programs and Services, 3-4:30 p.m. Feb. 9 and 23. This discussion group will be facilitated by Dr. Ramar Henderson, assistant professor in the Department of Counselor Education and Rehabilitation. Racial Healing Circles are designed to help students heal from the trauma of racism. All students are welcome to attend. Register here.
  • “Shared Legacies” film screening, presented by CineCulure, Feb. 10-12. A link to watch the film will be posted on the CineCulture website on Feb. 10 and can be viewed any time after it is posted.
  • A Celebration of African American Cinema and Film Discussion, presented by the Henry Madden Library, 6 p.m. Feb. 15. The final part of a two-part event, this series features a viewing of two films, followed by a discussion. This guided conversation on African American films will explore themes of manhood, racism and African American relationships. “Higher Learning” (1995), directed by John Singleton, and “Nothing But A Man” (1964), directed by Michael Roemer, will be available prior to the discussion for viewing. Pre-registration will be required for both the film viewing and discussion.
  • Interfaith Scholar Weekend: Bearing Witness from Fresno’s Mason-Dixon Line, ongoing Feb. 15-March 22, Zoom. The weekend webinar series, presented by Fresno Interfaith Scholar Weekend, begins with a panel of scholars at 4 p.m. Feb. 15. The series examines Fresno’s history of racism and redlining. Register here.
  • Real Talk: Getting Involved, noon Feb. 16, hosted by Off-Campus Student Life and African American Programs and Services. Featuring Fresno State alumnus Keith Arthur Bolden, Spelman College professor and actor, this “Real Talk” discussion will include conversations on building meaningful community and finding pockets of support on campus. Students, staff, faculty and community members are all invited to attend and take part in this thoughtful dialogue centered around involvement. Pre-register here.
  • Author reading: Nana Kwame Adjei-Brenyah, presented by the Master of Fine Arts Program in Creative Writing, 7-8 p.m. Feb. 19 on Zoom. Pre-registration is required.
  • Natural Hair Night, presented by African American Programs and Services, 5:30-7 p.m. Feb. 24, will feature natural-hair wearer testimonials and demonstrations on hair care techniques. Register here.
  • Walk in Peace: A Celebration of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Black History Month featuring the Fresno State choirs directed by Dr. Cari Earnhart and Fresno City College choirs, directed by Julie Dana, 7:30 p.m. Feb. 26 on YouTube. Fresno City College hosts this year’s annual event.
  • Super Sunday, presented by the California State University, 9 a.m.-noon Feb. 28. CSU leaders share empowering messages with churches throughout California about the importance of preparing for college. Fresno State’s African American Initiative is recruiting African American alumni to serve as keynote speakers for this year’s virtual event. The deadline to register is Feb. 10. Faith-based partners who are interested in participating can contact coordinator Wendy Nelson at