Diversity & Inclusion

Celebrating Juneteenth Freedom Day at MSUM 

One year after Governor Tim Walz proclaimed June 19 as Juneteenth Freedom Day in the State of Minnesota and President Joe Biden signed a law recognizing the day as Juneteenth National Independence Day, MSUM is joining the celebration with a paid day off for faculty and staff on Monday, June 20. 

Juneteenth commemorates the moment on June 19, 1865, when thousands of enslaved people learned they were free – two years after the Emancipation Proclamation was signed. While Juneteenth was only recognized by the federal government last year, it is the longest-running African American holiday. By celebrating Juneteenth, we honor African American history and understand there is still work to be done. 

MSUM is celebrating Juneteenth by co-sponsoring a couple of events. We hope you can join us!

  • Faith4Hope Juneteenth Freedom Celebration | Saturday, June 18 | 12 to 7 p.m. | After School Matters Community Center
    This free community event will feature music, dance and other performances along with cultural food and merchandise vendors. Learn more from the FB event.
  • Juneteenth: Then, Now, Here | Tuesday, June 21 | 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. | Hjemkomst Center
    The event will feature Black community leaders from different generations as speakers. Two speakers, Carl Griffin and Gregory Reed, are MSUM alumni who met as students when Project E-Quality was beginning at MSUM. Project E-Quality provided scholarships to students of color and is largely responsible for the diversity on MSUM’s campus today. They will talk about the experience they had during that time as well as their experience in helping create Minnesota’s first Juneteenth celebration in 1985. Frederick Edwards Jr., who is responsible for Fargo-Moorhead’s first Juneteenth celebration three years ago, will also be speaking. Join in person or via the Zoom link.

With the day off, faculty and staff are invited to use the time for advocacy, reflection, research and celebration. Happy Juneteenth to all our Dragons!