OWU Office of Multicultural Student Affairs spring events

The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs at OWU has some great events coming up focused on all kinds of justice:

  • Shaka Senghor Lecture and Book Signing, Wednesday, March 30th, 7pm in the HWCC Benes Rooms
  • Tamara Winfrey Harris Community Dialogue and Book Signing, Saturday, April 2nd at 7pm in Gray Chapel, University Hall
  • Sonia Sanchez Lecture and Book Signing, Thursday, April 7th at 7pm in the HWCC Benes Rooms

A quote on different kinds of justice, by Rev. Desmond Tutu

More details below…


Oprah Winfrey’s Super Soul Sunday guest, author, activist Shaka Senghor; author Tamara Winfrey Harris, and internationally renowned poet and Civil Rights activist Sonia Sanchez will be on campus in the Spring of 2016. All events are free and open to the public. Please feel free to share these memorable events with family, friends, colleagues, and students.

Shaka Senghor

In 1991, Shaka Senghor was sent to prison for second-degree murder, convicted of killing a man in an argument over drugs. Today, he is the author of six books, a lecturer at the University of Michigan, and a leading voice on criminal justice reform. While serving 19 years in prison, Senghor says he discovered redemption and responsibility through literature, his own writing, and the kindness of others. His newest book, “Writing My Wrongs: Life, Death, and Redemption in an American Prison,” was released March 8, 2016. Mr. Senghor is scheduled to be interviewed March 13th on the Oprah Winfrey Network (OWN) Emmy Award-winning television show, “Super Soul Sunday.” Previous guests have included former U.S. President Jimmy Carter.

Mr. Senghor will share his inspirational story when he visits Ohio Wesleyan University on Wednesday, March 30th at 7 p.m. in the Benes Rooms of HWCC for a lecture and book signing. Admission is free and books will be available to purchase in the OWU Bookstore and at the event.

According to Senghor’s publisher, “ ‘Writing My Wrongs’ is a redemption story told through a stunningly human portrait of what it’s like to grow up in the gravitational pull of poverty, violence, fear, and hopelessness. It’s an unforgettable tale of forgiveness and hope, one that reminds us that our worst deeds don’t define who we are or what we can contribute to the world. And it’s a lasting testament to the power of compassion, prayer, and unconditional love, for reaching those whom society has forgotten.”

In addition to penning “Writing My Wrongs” and five other books, Senghor is founder of The Atonement Project, which “seeks to begin community dialogues around issues of reconciliation, atonement, and healing after suffering the harm caused by crime and incarceration.”

He currently teaches a course on The Atonement Project at The University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and has been invited to participate in three TED talks, most recently on the main stage at the 30th Anniversary TED Conference in Vancouver, British Columbia.

Senghor also earned the 2012 Black Male Engagement (BMe) Leadership Award, was named a 2013 MIT Media Lab Director’s Fellow, and was selected as a Fellow in the inaugural class of the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s Community Leadership Network. Learn more about Senghor at www.shakasenghor.com. His OWU visit is sponsored by Black Men of the Future (BMF), Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs (WCSA), and Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA). Learn more about the office and its mission at www.owu.edu/omsa.

Link to Shaka Senghor: www.shakasenghor.com

Link to Oprah Winfrey ‘O Magazine” Article on Shaka Senghor: http://www.oprah.com/omagazine/What-Oprah-Knows-For-Sure-About-the-Power-of-Storytelling

Tamara Winfrey Harris

Author Tamara Winfrey Harris specializes in the ever-evolving space where current events, politics, and pop culture intersect with race and gender. Her first book is ‘The Sisters are Alright: Changing the Broken Narrative for Black Women in America’ (Berrett-Koehler Publishers, July 2015). “For black women,” Tamara explains, “the most radical thing we can do is to throw off the shackles forged by [stereotypes] and regain our full and complex humanity. [This] is a revolutionary act in the face of a society eager to mold us into hard, unbreakable things.”

Tamara Winfrey Harris will be at Ohio Wesleyan University on Saturday, April 2nd at 7:00pm in Gray Chapel of University Hall to facilitate a community dialogue book signing on the play, “Butterfly Confessions” which will be performed by the members of Sisters United. Books will be available to purchase in the OWU Bookstore and at the event.

Her work there has been referenced by New York magazine and a host of sites dedicated to feminism and race. An article from the blog post, “Nappy Love: Or How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Embrace the Kinks” was published by Oxford University Press (2014) in How Writing Works: 1st edition with Readings. Tamara was also a senior editor at Racialicious, a blog that explores the intersection of race and pop culture. Tamara is a sought-after commentator, having appeared on or published in media outlets such as The New York Times, NPR’s “Weekend Edition”, Minnesota Public Radio’s “The Daily Circuit,”, Ms., The American Prospect, Salon, The Guardian, Newsweek/Daily Beast, Jane Pratt’s XO Jane, The Huffington Post, and Psychology Today. Tamara’s article, “No Disrespect: Black Women and the Burden of Respectability,” which first appeared in Bitch magazine, was published in the fourth edition of the textbook, The Arlington Reader (Bedford/St. Martin’s 2013).

A Midwesterner at heart, Tamara is a native of Indiana. She graduated with a BA degree from the Greenlee School of Journalism at Iowa State University. She is also a graduate of the Maynard Institute’s Editing Program for Minority Journalists. With more than 20 years of experience in journalism, public relations and marketing, Tamara also teaches public speaking classes to college students. Tamara’s OWU visit is sponsored by Sisters United (SU), Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs (WCSA), and Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA). Learn more about the office and its mission at www.owu.edu/omsa.

Link to Tamara Winfrey Harris: www.tamarawinfreyharris.com

Sonia Sanchez

Poet. Mother. Professor. National and International lecturer on Black Culture and Literature, Women’s Liberation, Peace and Racial Justice. Sponsor of Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom. Board Member of MADRE. Sonia Sanchez is the author of over 16 books including Homecoming, We a BaddDDD People, Love Poems, I’ve Been a Woman, A Sound Investment and Other Stories, Homegirls and Handgrenades, Under a Soprano Sky, Wounded in the House of a Friend (Beacon Press, 1995), Does Your House Have Lions? (Beacon Press, 1997), Like the Singing Coming off the Drums (Beacon Press, 1998), Shake Loose My Skin (Beacon Press, 1999), and most recently, Morning Haiku (Beacon Press, 2010).

Sonia Sanchez will be at Ohio Wesleyan University on Thursday, April 7th at 7:00pm in the Benes Rooms of HWCC for lecture and book signing. Books will be available to purchase in the OWU Bookstore and at the event.

In addition to being a contributing editor to Black Scholar and The Journal of African Studies, she has edited an anthology, We Be Word Sorcerers: 25 Stories by Black Americans. BMA: The Sonia Sanchez Literary Review is the first African American Journal that discusses the work of Sonia Sanchez and the Black Arts Movement. A recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts, the Lucretia Mott Award for 1984, the Outstanding Arts Award from the Pennsylvania Coalition of 100 Black Women, the Community Service Award from the National Black Caucus of State Legislators, she is a winner of the 1985 American Book Award for Homegirls and Handgrenades, the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Humanities for 1988, the Peace and Freedom Award from Women International League for Peace and Freedom (W.I.L.P.F.) for 1989, a PEW Fellowship in the Arts for 1992-1993 and the recipient of Langston Hughes Poetry Award for 1999. Does Your House Have Lions? was a finalist for the National Book Critics Circle Award. She is the Poetry Society of America’s 2001 Robert Frost Medalist and a Ford Freedom Scholar from the Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History. Her poetry also appeared in the movie Love Jones.

Sonia Sanchez has lectured at over 500 universities and colleges in the United States and has traveled extensively, reading her poetry in Africa, Cuba, England, the Caribbean, Australia, Europe, Nicaragua, the People’s Republic of China, Norway, and Canada. She was the first Presidential Fellow at Temple University and she held the Laura Carnell Chair in English at Temple University. She is the recipient of the Harper Lee Award, 2004, Alabama Distinguished Writer, and the National Visionary Leadership Award for 2006. She is the recipient of the 2005 Leeway Foundation Transformational Award. Currently, Sonia Sanchez is one of 20 African American women featured in “Freedom Sisters,” an interactive exhibition created by the Cincinnati Museum Center and Smithsonian Institution traveling exhibition and she was the recipient of the Robert Creeley award in March of 2009. Sonia Sanchez’s OWU visit is sponsored by Sisters United (SU), Wesleyan Council on Student Affairs (WCSA), and Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA). Learn more about the office and its mission at www.owu.edu/omsa.

Link to Sonia Sanchez: www.soniasanchez.net

‘The Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA) at Ohio Wesleyan University holistically provides support, serves as an advocate, and enhances the quality of life for students of color and first generation college students. We examine and challenge academic, social, personal, and cultural perspectives while positively engaging the entire campus community in quality programming and open dialogue.’

Ohio Wesleyan University
Office of Multicultural Student Affairs (OMSA)
Hamilton-Williams Campus Center
Room #206
61 South Sandusky Street
Delaware, Ohio 43015
(740) 368-3142
Facebook Page Link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/338239379602771/
Instagram: OMSAatOWU
Twitter: @OMSAatOWU

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