Black History Month is known as the month of celebration for all black people and those who have paved the ways for future black generations. Black History Month typically celebrates important black figures in history, such as Harriet Tubman, Rosa Parks, Frederick Douglass, and of course Martin Luther King Jr. It is often celebrated during the month of February in America and Canada but in October in countries like Ireland, the Netherlands, and the UK.
This year for Black History Month, Boston 25 WFXT had decided to spotlight NASA Astronaut Dr. Jeanette Epps. In fact, sophomore Lynn-Sarah Georges, junior Fabrice Brudent, and senior Valery Delva were three Malden High students that got the opportunity to interview Epps, virtually, at the station.
Georges stated that interviewing the astronaut was “very amusing and educational.” She further said that “it was like getting the inside view from a successful black woman. And that’s important because we don’t have enough people to set that example for us.”
News Reporter, Crystal Haynes, was the one that created the Black History Month segment for Boston 25 because the station, WFXT, had not done anything extensive for Black History Month. Haynes decided to change that three years ago using the “three fundamental truths of journalism,” one of them being: representation matters.
Haynes chose to get students from MHS because “Malden is the most diverse school in the state,” and she wanted to “embrace that as a resource.” The students were selected by the principal, Chris Mastrangelo.
The students interviewed the astronaut because she was “scheduled to go to the moon soon and accomplished great things,” and wanted to get the “inside scoop on what it is like to be a successful woman of color” as Georges mentioned.
The interview consisted of questions like what life is like for Epps and what the struggles she had faced on a day to day basis as a woman of color.
Georges learned that “in life, you have to pursue your own goals and not to rely on anyone else to get you there,” and that you “have to take initiative at a very young age in order to achieve things later in life.”
Georges found out she was chosen for this opportunity when she was in math class. She noted that she felt like it was “just the stepping stones to a bright future.”
Georges also added that she was grateful that “at Malden High [they] have teachers and faculty that look out for their students beyond class time,” just like Mastrangelo did. “Without him [she] would not have gotten this opportunity.”
The segment was aired on Friday, February 28th and can be found here on the Boston 25 website to be used as an educational tool in the classroom.