Who is Ida B. Wells?
Born a slave in Mississippi in 1862, Ida B. Wells achieved national attention as a leader of the anti-lynching crusade, a writer, an activist, and a suffragist. Wells traveled throughout the United States and Europe with the anti-lynching message. She wrote extensively on the injustices faced by African Americans, and she was engaged in a never-ending effort to organize women and African Americans.
Ida B. Wells Society
The Ida B. Wells Society, and the leadership Gateway, was created to recognize the scholarly achievement of African-American students. Members of the college community who achieve a grade point average of 3.0 or higher, participate in community service and fully participate in the activities that explore African-American culture, identity, leadership and civic engagement as the foundation for their active participation in the college community are invited to apply for induction into the society. Honorary members are inducted each fall and during Kwanzaa from alumni, faculty and staff who have contributed to the community and who value academic achievement.
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What extra-curricular activities will I be participating in? Ida B. Wells Society members participate in community service programming and support multicultural programming on campus and in the broader community. They are actively engaged in planning the Annual Kwanzaa Celebration, a unique rite of incorporation that celebrates sisterhood, academic success, and cultural pride.
Leadership. Most of the students who are inducted into the Ida B. Wells Society as freshmen continue to be student leaders, big “sistas,” and active participants in student organizations including those organizations particularly for students of color. Many Ida B. Wells members make a commitment to active engagement in multicultural programming which qualifies them to be invited to participate in the Ajani Celebration.
Class Quilt Project
The Class Quilt Project is a project initiated by members of the Ida B. Society. Upper class student encourage first year sisters to contribute an identity quilt square to begin a conversation about the value of identity. The project is intended to get students thinking about who they are and who they hope to be. The quilt is pieced together with a class theme and it is presented at their Kwanzaa celebration. The quilts serve as a monument for student success. When they graduate, the quilt becomes a backdrop for the annual Ajani celebration.
Other projects that IBW students participate in include: