Educate, Celebrate, and Activate

Juneteenth, also known as “Emancipation Day” or the “Day of Freedom,” is both the somber and celebratory day to commemorate the Thirteenth Amendment abolishing slavery. Utah State University is commemorating Juneteenth weeklong with virtual and in-person events from June 12–18, featuring educational panels and presentations on early and current activism and its importance, culminating in a Juneteenth Musical Celebration. Register to attend 2023 Juneteenth events.

Monday, June 12th | Juneteenth Kickoff

Juneteenth Welcome Reception
3 pm – 4:30 pm | Eccles Conference Center | AggieCast

The Juneteenth Welcome Reception serves as a joyous gathering to commemorate the historical significance of Juneteenth, fostering unity, and cultural appreciation. All are welcome to join us as we hear from various speakers including Vice President of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at the University of Virginia Dr. Kevin G. McDonald. Come jumpstart our Juneteenth Event Series with an opportunity to celebrate the resilience and contributions of our Black community while emphasizing the ongoing commitment to building an inclusive and equitable society for all.

Friday, June 16th | Educate

Educational Museum Displays: USU Library, Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, Utah Black History Museum
10 am – 6 pm | TSC International Lounge

Learn more about our history by walking through museum displays highlighting Black and African American History as it relates to Utah State University and the State of Utah. Displayed artifacts are provided by the USU Library, Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, and the Utah Black History Museum.

USU Alumni and Student Meet & Greet
10 am – 12 pm | West Stadium Center 3rd Floor Champions Club

An opportunity for Black and African American USU Alumni to meet and connect with USU students and student-athletes. All students and student-athletes are welcome to attend and participate!

Race & Policing Panel
1 – 2:30 pm | TSC Ballroom | AggieCast

DJ Brookter
Panelists: Sherriff Mikelshan Bartschi, Officer Michael Gates, Terri Hughes, Rae Duckworth

The national conversation surrounding Black folks and policing is well-known and documented. In fact, many of us are more familiar with what is happening on the national level than we are with what is happening in the State of Utah and in Cache Valley. Join local law enforcement and community activists in a conversation about the status of race and policing in the State of Utah. Participate in this event in-person or virtually.

Race & Parenting Panel
3 – 4:30 pm | TSC Ballroom | AggieCast

Michelle Love-Day
Justice Smith, Dr. Aryn Dotterer, Bianca Mittendorf, Chantel Labrum

Juneteenth is a day of celebration and reflection on the history of slavery in the United States and the ongoing struggle for racial equality. One aspect of this struggle is the role of race in parenting. This panel will discuss the experiences and ways to create an environment that embraces diversity, equity, and inclusion and actively works to break down racial barriers, specifically for Black children. By understanding the unique experiences and challenges of Black children, we can provide them with the support and guidance they need to thrive across the United States.

We will explore families' experiences with Black children, and discuss strategies for navigating conversations about race and racism with our children, empowering them to be agents of change in creating a more just and equitable society.

A Celebration of Title IX: The Black Female Student-Athlete Experience at USU Panel
5 – 6:30 pm | TSC Ballroom | AggieCast

Moderator: Dr. Sabrina "Bre" White
Panelist: Roietta Goodwin Fulgham, Angela Ice, Sergeant Camille Brox, Ash Brown

We welcome USU Women’s Basketball student-athlete alumni to discuss their experiences playing basketball for the Utah State Aggies in the 1980s. They will speak to the challenges and triumphs of their experiences as well as offer insights on the progress USU has made since Title IX and ways we can continue our efforts to provide a meaningful collegiate athletics experience to our Black female student-athletes. Participate in this event in-person or virtually.

Rhythm and Writing Workshop hosted by Herb Newsome
7 – 9:00 pm | TSC Ballroom

A Rhyming and Graffiti Interactive Workshop with actor and artist Herb Newsome. An in depth, practical look at two of the four fundamental elements of Hip Hop: Graffiti and MCing. Half Art Class/ Half Music Creation, the workshop will give the participants a chance to learn about the art form, as well as put their own hands to use in a practical creative environment. Be ready to immerse yourself in the world of Hip Hop and let your inner artist come alive. This event is free and open to the public.

Saturday, June 17th | Celebrate

Sunday, June 18th | Activate

USU Aggie Alumni Band Concert Juneteenth Musical Celebration ft. The Debra Bonner Unity Gospel Choir
7 pm | Daines Concert Hall

Come celebrate with the USU Aggie Alumni Band as they kick off their weekly summer concerts with their special opening concert of the season highlighting black composers and soloists in collaboration with the Debra Bonner Unity Gospel Choir in commemoration of the ending of slavery.

Ever since its inception in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1866 — one year after enslaved African Americans in the state learned of their freedom due to the Emancipation Proclamation and Thirteenth Amendment — Juneteenth celebrations tend to focus on education and reflection on the path to freedom and the steps still needed to achieve equity.

Though long celebrated in Black communities, the holiday is only recently gaining more widespread acknowledgment. As we celebrate with cookouts and other gatherings, it’s important to remember the need for self-reflection and education on the path of acknowledging and healing from the past. Register for USU’s events, share your story, and explore the Juneteenth speaker and video archives.

Black USU Alumni Stories
Share your story or dive into the stories of Black USU graduates.

Emancipation Day Celebration in 1900
Emancipation Day Celebration in 1900 — Austin History Center, Austin Public Library

Juneteenth Team

USU Partners

  • Aggie Chocolate Factory
  • Aggie Creamery
  • Aggies Think, Care, Act
  • Athletics Department
  • Cache Community Connections
  • Caine College of Arts (NEHMA)
  • Campus Rec
  • Center for Intersectional Gender Studies & Research
  • College of Agriculture & Applied Sciences, Cooperative Extension
  • College of Engineering
  • College of Humanities & Social Sciences
  • College of Science
  • Division of Student Affairs
  • Emma Eccles Jones College of Education & Human Services
  • Executive Vice President
  • Jon M. Huntsman School of Business
  • Lee's Market Place
  • Logo Shop
  • Office of Equity
  • Office of Research
  • Office of the President
  • School of Graduate Studies
  • The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
  • USU Alumni Association
  • USU Marketing & Communications Department

Community Partners

  • Blackstone
  • Cook Sautter Foot & Ankle
  • DJ Brookter, Young Community Developers, USU Alum
  • Herm's Inn
  • Lee's Market Place
  • Logo Shop
  • Morgan Stanley

2023 Committee Leads

  • Co-Lead: Cree Taylor
  • Co-Lead: Amand Hardiman
  • Artist: Laurie Daines

Planning Committee Members

  • Abe Rodriguez
  • Aeden Anbesse
  • Amand Hardiman
  • Akira Averett
  • Cree Taylor
  • Hal Magnusen
  • Heidi Adams
  • Isaiah Jones
  • Jennifer Seamons
  • Joey McKnight
  • Justice Smith
  • Latrisha Fall
  • Reagan Jones
  • Ross Peterson
  • Sian Smith
  • Sid Naerebout
  • Sione Siaki
  • Taya Flores
  • Tessa Evans
  • Waqa Damuni