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August 19, 2017

Preseason serves as opportunity for young UMass men’s soccer players -

August 13, 2017

Amherst Fire Department website adds user friendly components and live audio feed -

August 11, 2017

UMass takes the cake for best campus dining -

August 11, 2017

Two UMass students overcome obstacles to win full-ride scholarships -

August 2, 2017

The guilt of saying ‘guilty’ -

August 2, 2017

UMass tuition set to rise 3-4 percent for 2017-2018 school year -

July 18, 2017

PVTA potential cuts affect UMass and five college students -

July 10, 2017

New director of student broadcast media at UMass this fall -

July 10, 2017

Whose American Dream? -

June 24, 2017

Man who threatened to bomb Coolidge Hall taken into ICE custody -

June 24, 2017

Cale Makar drafted by Colorado Avalanche in first round of 2017 NHL Entry Draft -

June 24, 2017

Conservatives: The Trump experiment is over -

June 17, 2017

UMass basketball lands transfer Kieran Hayward from LSU -

May 18, 2017

UMass basketball’s Donte Clark transferring to Coastal Carolina -

May 17, 2017

Report: Keon Clergeot transfers to UMass basketball program -

May 15, 2017

Despite title-game loss, Meg Colleran’s brilliance in circle was an incredible feat -

May 14, 2017

UMass softball loses in heartbreaker in A-10 title game -

May 14, 2017

Navy sinks UMass women’s lacrosse 23-11 in NCAA tournament second round, ending Minutewomen’s season -

May 14, 2017

UMass softball advances to A-10 Championship game -

May 13, 2017

Africana Expo kicks off Black History Month

By: Gisel Saillant

Photos courtesy of Gisel Saillant


With the jokes made about Black History Month being the shortest month of the year, the days in February are used to measure the equality between racial groups in the U.S. Last week, UMass seized the opportunity to make every day count by kicking off Black History Month with the “Africana Expo” in the Campus Center concourse on Monday, Feb. 2.


I wanted to comment on this particular event and how I have experienced black history. The “Africana Expo,” was an expression of the inclusive properties Black History Month has obtained, with “black” constituting a universal experience. On the concourse you could connect the shores of where the movement of the African Diaspora has reached. Registered Student Organizations like the African Student Union and the Black Student Union consider themselves part of the movement.


As I was browsing around each display board, I got a word from Banzi Pires, one of the event organizers, as drum players were setting up their instruments. I smiled and mentioned to him how I came prepared because I wore my “good” jeans. When those drums started playing, I said, “Finally, UMass is alive!”


Some people wished they brought their earplugs with them to the safety of the Blue Wall. I bumped into Banzi while I made my rounds and noticed how attentive he was to the crowd passing by. He pointed out to me the sour expressions some of the passers-by had to the drums playing. This was fascinating to me, as some acted completely indifferent to the drums being played. They didn’t even flinch to a beat.


Others felt their shoulders tense up as the sound made them cringe. Most notably, two elderly women had conveniently placed their hands over the ears to block the sound completely. No offense was taken on my part, because these expressions solidified the experience between myself and the people that recognize this instrument as a foundation to their culture and identity.


Gisel Saillant can be reached at

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