African American Read-in to be held Feb. 23


Crystal Giles, librarian, reads “The New Jim Crow” in the R.C. Pugh Library.  An African American Read-in will be held in the library Feb. 23 from 2-3 p.m. in honor of Black History Month.  (Photo by Allen Brewer)


By Allen Brewer

This year, the R. C. Pugh Library will be hosting its sixth annual African American Read-in for Northwest students, faculty and staff. The event, hosted by Librarian Crystal Giles, will be held Feb. 23 in the Viewing Room from 2-3 p.m.

The DeSoto Center library will also hold it’s first Read-in Feb. 21. The event will be hosted by Librarian Tina Kenton who hopes to introduce students to diverse literature. The event will start at 2 p.m and will feature guest speaker, Dr. Rachell Anderson, a local author and member of the Northwest Board of Trustees.

“As a librarian, I seize every opportunity to promote diverse books to all readers especially our students,” Kenton said. “This event exposes the rich history of African Americans writers through stories. Therefore, I’m hoping that all in attendance will leave wanting to read more diverse literature.”

The Read-in is a national program that is now celebrating it’s 28th anniversary. The project was created by the Black Caucus of National Council of Teachers of English in 1989. The event is meant to inspire young readers with stories by famous African American writers while also reminding them of the struggles for freedom in the Civil Rights sit-ins.

“In 2011, Dr. Jerrie Cobb Scott, an active member of NCTE, spoke at an event hosted by Deborah Wilbourn,” Giles said. “She inspired me to begin hosting an event.”

Students attending the events will be asked to sit in a circle and read passages of their favorite book by an African American author. Such books can include, Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston; Roots by Alex Haley and I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou.

“I think it is excellent,” Sidney Sykes, a freshman studying computer science from Marks, said. “It is a part of all our history, not just African Americans. History is rich for all races.”

The event is held in February in honor of Black History Month, a special month to concentrate on the accomplishments of all African Americans leaders. This year’s celebration is no less profound by the opening of the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture.

“We all need to know and learn of the rich culture and heritage of people of African descent and reading is a great way to learn of such,” Giles said. “African American writers tell our story from our perspective.”

Both students, faculty and staff are invited to participate in the event. Black, white, yellow, red or brown, readers of all races and ethnicities can enjoy a day learning about the individuals that helped write for equality.

“The color of your skin doesn’t mater,” Amber Aven, a sophomore studying general college from Harmon, said. “I think it matters what’s in the inside.”

2016-2017 Hall of Fame


Northwest Presidnt, Dr. Gary Lee Spears (far left) congratulates (front row, left to right) Kendall Newton of Hernando; Kendall McCoy of Olive Branch; Andrea Galloway of Ridgeland; Linsey Lawrence of Oxford; and Andrea Green of Horn Lake; (back row, left to right) Nicholas Thurman of Southaven; Allen Brewer of Oxford; Jarod Wright of Arlington and Jacob Griffin of Batesville at the 2016-2017 Northwest Hall of Fame ceremony. Not pictured is Matthew (Keegan) Riley of Hernando and Ashley Clark of Ozark. (Staff Photo) 

By Allen Brewer

Eleven Northwest studnets were inducted into the 2016-2017 Northwest Hall of Fame Feb. 9. Based upon academics and achievements, the Hall of Fame is the highest honor a student can acheve at Northwest. The students where honored by the Board of Trustees and President Dr. Gary Lee Spears.

Five students were chosen to represent the Senatobia campus.

Kendall McCoy of Olive Branch is studying elemenary education. McCoy is a graduate of Olive Branch High School. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, the Student Nurses Association, Rangerettes and the Batist Student Union. Her goal is to become a third grade teacher.

Kendall Newton of Hernando is studying special education. Newton is a graduate of Hernando High School. She is involved with the Northwest Education Association, Northwest Entertainers and the Baptist Student Union. Her career goal is to teach special education.

Jarod Wright of Arlington is studying biology and business. Wright is a graduate of Arlington High School. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, the Baptist Student Union and the Ranger Baseball team.His education goals are to further is education and baseball career at a four- year university.

Jacob Griffin of Batesville is studying nursing. Griffin is a graduate of South Panola High School. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, Northwest Players Club, Northwest Singers and the Baptist Student Union. His educational goal is to obtain a BSN in nursing.

Mathew (Keegan) Riley of Hernando is a graduate of Hernando High Shool and is studying theatre. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa, Northwest Singers, is active in speech and theatre productions and the Northwest Players Club. His career goal is to pursue professional acting and a position at a production company.

Four students were chosen to represent the DeSoto Center.

Nicholas Thurman of Southaven is studying  physical therapy. Thurman is a graduate of Southaven High School. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa. His educational goal is to obtain a degree in physical therapy from the University of Mississippi Medical Center.

Andrea Galloway of Ridgeland is studying funeral service technology. Galloway is a graduate of East Marion High School. She is a member of Sigma Phi Sigma and was selected for the Homecoming Court and Miss MWCC 2015-16.  Her career goals are to join her family’s business at Cook-Galloway Funeral Home in Columbus and to one day become county coroner.

Andrea Green of Horn Lake is studying business and marketing managment. Green is a graduate of Horn Lake High School. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and is the vice president of DECA. Her career goal is to become a pharmeceutical patent lawyer.

Ashley Clark of Ozark, Missouri is studying biochemistry and is a member of Phi Theta Kappa. Her career goal is to become a laboratory scientist specializing in the diagostics of molecular genetics.

Two students where chosen to represent the Lafayette-Yalobusha Technical Center.

Allen Brewer of Oxford is studying journalism. Brewer is a graduate of Pontotoc City High School. He is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and the Ranger Rocket newspaper.  His career goal is to become a reporter for a major publication.

Linsey Lawrence of Oxford is studying occupational thereapy. Lawrence is a graduate of Lafayette High School. She is a member of Phi Theta Kappa and Gamma Beta Phi. Her career goal is to become a pediatric/special needs occupational therapist.