Black History Summer Academy
- Week long program focused on history, culture, and advocacy for students of all ages from preschool to adult.
- Hosted by Drury University at Lay Hall (900 N Benton Av) and Deliverance Temple Church.
- Contact Gwen Marshall for more information.
Ariya - means celebration in Swahili
The Black History Summer Academy's Ariya is highlighted by its Rites of Passage Ceremony. Kwanzishas (the young ladies that are being honored) are recent African American and/or Black female graduates, who are presented to the Circle of Elders. These elders are respected African American leaders in their community, dressed in Afrocentric attire, who preside over the Kwanzishas as they take ownership of their own futures.
Each Kwanzisha is celebrated for her academic achievements and community service. She is recognized as a scholar, and her future plans are pronounced to the community. She is applauded for her hard work and given an opportunity to share an inspirational word to young people in the audience. Every Kwanzisha is escorted by African American and/or Black male students, Askari-Hodari (young warrior). Each stand behind the young woman they honor and escort.