Lincroft N.J December 22, 2011- Brookdale Community College’s Black Student Union lit the symbolic kinara candles celebrating the seven principles of Kwanzaa and shared the importance of the holiday with students and community the afternoon of December 15 in the Warner Student Life Center.

Members of the Black Student Union performed an informative presentation on the significance of Kwanzaa on Thursday, December 15.  After the ceremony attendees enjoyed a feast while African melodies played in the background.  Students pictured from left to right: Shana Kay Williams, Black Student Union advisor Phyllis Shafer, Devan Overall, Shantel Levy, Mirella Balinu, Black Student Union advisor Sheri Stanford, Dalia Malic, and Erin Stewart.

Using an interactive format, the students shared the significance of the principals and symbols for each of the seven days of Kwanzaa;

  • Umoja (Unity): To strive for and to maintain unity in the family, community, nation, and race.
  • Kujichagulia (Self-Determination): To define ourselves, name ourselves, create for ourselves, and speak for ourselves stand up.
  • Ujima (Collective Work and Responsibility): To build and maintain our community together and make our brothers' and sisters' problems our problems, and to solve them together.
  • Ujamaa (Cooperative Economics): To build and maintain our own stores, shops, and other businesses and to profit from them together.
  • Nia (Purpose): To make our collective vocation the building and developing of our community in order to restore our people to their traditional greatness.
  • Kuumba (Creativity): To do always as much as we can, in the way we can, in order to leave our community more beautiful and beneficial than we inherited it.
  • Imani (Faith): To believe with all our heart in our people, our parents, our teachers, our leaders, and the righteousness and victory of our struggle.

The celebration followed with a lunch for all.

Kwanzaa 2011 begins on December 26 and concludes January 1, 2012.