Gophers Celebrate Black History Month

Go Gophers! Former Gophers Dom Barber and Alexis Russell spoke to students about life after college.
Go Gophers!
Former Gophers Dom Barber and Alexis Russell spoke to students about life after college.
Go Gophers!

Feb. 18, 2014

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The University of Minnesota athletics department celebrated Black History Month - "Celebrating Our Rich African American Heritage" on Friday, Feb. 14 at TCF Bank Stadium. Gopher Athletics invited Ramsey Middle School (St. Paul) to the event, which included 245 eighth graders as attendees.

Broken up into six groups (blue, orange, red, maroon, green and purple), the eighth graders went into different stations throughout TCF Bank Stadium. Along with former and current student-athletes, members of the Gopher Athletic family volunteered for the event. Also assisting as escorts were eight members from the Huntley House.

Vanessa Abanu and Chole Villegas from the University of Minnesota African American Studies held one station, which covered the Roots of African American History in the DQ clubroom.

Former Gophers greats Dom Barber (football) and Alexis Russell (women’s gymnastics) were also a station and located in the DQ Clubroom as they conducted a question/answer discussion about their path to college and life after college. Barber talked about his life following after professional football, while Russell discussed graduate school.

A variety of current student-athletes were located in the media room as the eighth graders asked questions about college, academics and getting into college. 

Tex Ostvig, U Connects - Multicultural Center for Academic Excellence, was located in Minnesota’s training table area as he talked about the importance of going to college. The other station was a tour of TCF, which included the pressbox/suite area as well as the Golden Gopher Football home lockerroom.

All individuals were provided lunch and a U of M 2014 Black History tot bag for attending the event.