Malcolm Thomas speaks to RMU

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Malcolm Thomas speaks to RMU

Tori Flick

Tori Flick

Tori Flick

Brittany Mayer

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In honor of Black History Month, the Multicultural Student Services and the Black Student Union invited Malcolm Thomas to come and present in the fourth installment of the Diversity Speaker Series on Feb. 17 in the Sewall Center.

Malcolm Thomas, named after the famous Malcolm X, is a historian and professor at the University of Preparatory here in Pittsburgh. This was his first time speaking for the Diversity Speaker Series, but he has worked with RMU before with the Black Male Leadership Development Institute and other organizations.

“Thank you for having me,” said Thomas, “I hope everyone gained something today and I look forward to interacting with you all again and doing other things in the future.”

The beginning of the event consisted of an introduction by a friend of Thomas’s for over 30 years, Dr. Michael Quigley, assistant professor of organizational leadership and the project director of BLMDI.

“My respect for him goes beyond our 30 year plus friendship,” said Quigley, “He truly is a master teacher.”

Thomas then gave his lecture named “History or Mistory” to talk about how the pharaohs of ancient Egypt appeared black, but are not shown in the history books as often. He went through a brief description on how history works, then got to his main point about the race of the first pharaohs. The audience never took their eyes off him as he spoke and he encouraged everyone to not take his word for it, but to go and do some research themselves.

“One thing they can always do is study,” said Thomas. “And do research and check into things because when I first started studying black history there was no internet…now you can go on YouTube or Google and see footage on almost every subject and everybody.”

At the end of his presentation, Victoria Snyder, director of the MSS, showed her appreciation for the lecture by giving Thomas a RMU T-shirt and water bottle so he can represent the university wherever he goes.

“Mr. Thomas is also a friend of the institution,” said Snyder. “He had a captive audience (at one of his lectures) of highschool boys for an hour and a half…I thought ‘I have to get him here to RMU. I don’t know when and I don’t know how but we need him here.’”

This is not the last installment for the Diversity Speaker Series. For more information go to www.rmu.edu/mss.

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