HOLYOKE, Mass. (WWLP) – Holyoke Community College (HCC) is celebrating Black History Month with a series of events.

The events began Monday, celebrating this year’s theme, “Resistance and Persistence: Celebrating Black Leadership in Our Community,” according to a news release sent to 22News from HCC.

On Wednesday, HCC alum and current Mount Holyoke College student Safiyah Bey of Springfield hosted a talk titled “Teaching and Learning as Resistance: The Truth School – Building Social Movements through Education.”

“I think it’s important to celebrate our Black students, especially our Alums, and for our students and staff to see what they’re doing,” said Catie Sirois, a success coach for the Student Ambassador Program.

There will also be events on February 15th, with a talk from the associate athletic director for diversity and inclusion at Amherst College, and February 22nd, with a panel discussion with Black business leaders to share personal stories of overcoming barriers to success.

“I’m really excited about the diversity of events this year,” said President Christina Royal. “There really is something for everyone who wants to engage, learn, and celebrate.”

HCC is also inviting everyone to participate in a common read of the book How the Word is Passed: A Reckoning with the History of Slavery Across America by author Clint Smith. Also, HCC’s Black History Month committee is selling specially designed Black History Month merchandise to raise money for the annual Black Student Alliance Award, which is given annually to one member of the club.