#SCCUNITES Campaign Heightens Campus Awareness of Inclusion
(Orange, CA)—Santiago Canyon College (SCC) will honor the lasting impact of Frederick Douglass with a sculpture installation on Tuesday, November 7, 2017. The ceremony will take place in front of the Humanities Building at 3 p.m. on the SCC campus, located at 8045 E. Chapman Ave., Orange, CA 92869.
Douglass, an abolitionist, writer, orator, and statesman, was arguably the most influential African American leader of the nineteenth century. After escaping from slavery, he became a national leader of the abolitionist movement in New York and Massachusetts, earning recognition for his powerful oratory and penetrating antislavery writings. His life as a reformer included his abolitionist activities in the early 1840s and his attacks on Jim Crow and lynching in the 1890s. He also edited an influential black newspaper, The North Star, and achieved international fame as a powerful, persuasive orator.
Douglass wrote several autobiographies. In Narrative of the Life of Frederick Douglass, an American Slave (1845), he described his experiences as a slave. This book became a bestseller and helped launch the cause of abolition nationwide. He went on to write two additional autobiographies, My Bondage and My Freedom (1855) and The Life and Times of Frederick Douglass (1881).
Abolition was not the only cause of importance to Douglass. In 1848, he was the only African American to attend the Seneca Falls Convention, the first women's rights convention, in upstate New York. At this gathering, Elizabeth Cady Stanton proposed a resolution in favor of women's suffrage. Douglass spoke eloquently in support of the resolution and said that he could not accept the right to vote as a black man if women could not also vote. After his impactful speech, the resolution was passed. Douglass also utilized the pages of his newspaper to take a public stand on women’s suffrage. In fact, one of his final public appearances in 1895 was at the National Council of Women in Washington, D.C. Shortly after his appearance, Douglass returned home and died following a heart attack.
The selection of Frederick Douglass for the bust to be placed outside of the Humanities Building was based on a recommendation by SCC faculty in the Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Division. The sculpture was commissioned by Toni and Ray Mendoza, who also underwrote SCC’s busts of Sally Ride, Lorenzo Ramirez, Dolores Huerta, and Cesar Chavez. The bust is the work of Southern California artist, Juan Rosillo. Rosillo, whose mother is Italian, was born in Colombia and came to Southern California in 1983. He works in diverse media, including sculpture, painting, drawing, etching, serigraph, stone litho, tile, and mosaic.
SCC President John Hernandez, Ph.D., will begin the ceremony with opening remarks. RSCCD Trustee Zeke Hernandez, SCC professor of sociology John West, Ed.D., SCC human biology student Broklynn Rae Gomez, and UCI associate professor of criminology, law and society Geoff Ward, Ph.D., will also speak. At 4:15 p.m. in Humanities 106, Ward will introduce a screening of the award-winning documentary “13th” which takes a critical look at the U.S. incarceration system after the 13th amendment to the U.S. Constitution abolishing slavery unless as a punishment for a crime.
To prepare the campus for the installation of the Frederick Douglass bust, SCC assistant professor of women’s studies Shereen Siddiqui, Ph.D., along with adjunct art instructor Steven Gonsowski have launched a #SCCUNITES campaign to spotlight the culture of inclusion on the SCC campus.
“Earlier in the fall after Charlottesville, our faculty felt that we needed to do something to focus on the oneness of the SCC community,” said Siddiqui. “We wanted our students and the community to know that our campus is a place where everyone can feel included and accepted and where there is no room for hateful rhetoric.”
To that end, Gonsowski asked his students to contribute artwork for consideration as the logo behind the campaign. The winning artwork was jointly created by SCC students Christina Hanson and Lily Strozewski. It features two clasped hands and the #SCCUNITES with the hashtag surrounding a golden heart.
“Lily and I collaborated and joined the aspects of our individual designs into one design,” said 19-year-old SCC graphic design major Hanson. “SCC is a college where everyone can feel welcome. That’s why our design features the holding hands. We all need to start holding hands and not guns.”
On Thursday, November 2 from 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m., SCC students will be invited to Humanities 236 to have their photos taken by SCC photography student Andrew Stocks. The photos will spotlight the campaign logo and will become backdrop for the Frederick Douglass bust installation and will be featured on the college’s social media channels.
The Frederick Douglass installation, including parking, is free and open to the public. For more information or to RSVP, please call (714) 628-4790.
About Santiago Canyon College
Santiago Canyon College (SCC) serves more than 17,000 credit and noncredit students each semester. In 2017, SCC was ranked #13 among the 50 Best Community Colleges in the U.S. by College Choice, a leading authority in college and university rankings and resources. The college prepares students for transfer to four-year institutions and careers, and provides courses for personal and professional development, as well as customized training for business and industry. The college is recognized for its adult education program which keeps the working adult—and senior—in mind by offering flexible schedules, and community locations. Serving the residents of Anaheim Hills, Orange, Tustin, and Villa Park, SCC is one of two comprehensive colleges under the auspices of the Rancho Santiago Community College District. Visit http://www.sccollege.edu to learn more.
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