Black History Month, or National African American Month, begins February 1st and ends February 28th. It’s meant to celebrate and recognize the achievements of African Americans and their central role in history. Before the month comes to an end, Her Campus wanted to celebrate by recognizing some African American students at Kent State who are doing wonderful things. Keep reading to learn more about the Executive Director of the Undergraduate Student Government at Kent State University, Marvin Logan.
Name: Marvin Logan
Major: Pan-African Studies
Hometown: Warren, Ohio
Her Campus: What organizations are you involved in on campus?Marvin Logan: Undergraduate Student Government, Black United Students, Male Empowerment Network, Black Squirrel Radio, TV2 and the Kent Stater.
HC: Can you tell me a little bit about your involvement with these organizations? ML: Being involved with these particular organizations allows me to exercise all of my passions. They help me get the most out of my college experience and as a human being. I think first and foremost that the most important aspect of humanity and civility, is service. Through service I am able to make a difference whether it’s with 1 person or 10,000 people. What matters is that every day I wake up and I try to make sure that something was different and something was better by the time that I go to sleep.
HC: Where do you see yourself in 10 years?ML: Married, a father, a professional…I see myself having a few letters attached to the end of my name and working at a university teaching black studies with focuses on music and media. Also, I see myself successfully running my business “Logan media productions.”
HC: What is one thing that you’re very passionate about?ML: I am extremely passionate about my culture; it’s at the epicenter and forefront of everything that I do. It defines me as a person and it defines my work. It’s really just what really drives me.
HC: Who has made a significant impact on your life while you have been a student here?ML: Although I have had many campus mentors, the number one influence is my father. He is smarter than any college professor and wiser than any man I have ever known. He has shaped me as a human being and as a man. He and my Creator are the largest reasons why I am successful today.
HC: What has been your most memorable experience at Kent State?ML: It’s a tie between my concert as Director of Programming with Kendrick Lamar and Steve Aioki and the March for Justice that I participated in with Black United Students last semester. Those two experiences are very indicative of what my transcription of a student here has been. Being able to do things that celebrate life and celebrate culture and bring joy to people at the same time.
HC: How would you define diversity?ML: I would define diversity as variety, with an alpha and omega and everything in between. Diversity is in our culture, in our style, in our education, in our ethnicity, in our experience, in our knowledge, in our words, in the way that we walk, in what we listen to, the things that we make, what we eat and what is in our souls. That’s my definition of diversity.
HC: Describe what it’s been like serving as the USG Executive Director in one word:ML: Experience.
HC: If you could have lunch with one historical figure who would it be and why?ML: It would be Malik El-Shabazz, towards the later part of his life. He began to have revelations of life, faith and humanity when he returned upon his prehistorical mecca and I think that he had something great to offer to the world, but was taken prematurely. His work and his experiences as a man has driven me in my life experiences and my work experiences.
HC: What is one piece of advice that you would give to a freshmen?ML: STAY- actually, I take that back, what I would have to say would depend upon the freshmen because every freshman is different, every freshman has their own experience. Depending on their experiences when they got here, it would alter what I would say. At the end of the day I would advocate for them to stay and to learn and experience. To break down boundaries and break down who they are when they arrive so they are able to grow.
HC: What does leadership mean to you?ML: Leadership to me is sacrifice. If you’ve ever seen a sculpture of the man holding the earth. He is the leader, everything he does will affect everything else who is on top of him. He gets all the praise and the glory. But what matters is that that leader does something. It’s not about the leader, it’s about those who he leads. The quality in the leader isn’t about the person he is but about the work he does and the legacy he leaves. They must lead in a direction. It’s always about making meaning and reaching goals.
HC: What does it mean to be you to be black? ML: It means life, I come from people who gave the work of many. We have made lots of contributions to the world, recognized and unrecognized and it gives me something to really be able to aspire to do and my blackness exceeds beyond being in a cotton field of the barrel of a slave ship. For many people that’s where their blackness begins, but mine begins in the fertile crescent of ancient Mesopotamia and everything we have come to today. I don’t just identify with Americans, but with blacks all around the world. I love our music, our dancing, our food, our science, our art, our medicine, I love being black. It’s a part of who I am and it’s a part of what I do.
HC: Is there anything else that you think our readers should know about you?ML: There are so many things that people don’t know about me and it’s not often I get a chance to tell my story because I spend most of my time trying to better students experiences, but I am not Marvin Logan the Executive Director or Student Body President. I am Marvin. I love to sing, I love to dance. I am Marvin who loves to write, who loves to read, who loves to cook, who loves to pray, who loves to live. I bring all of those things with me, into me, into the things I do because it’s how I make a difference and it’s how I make my decisions and how I proceed with my work. And so, always get to know the people around you for more than what you think or see them as and always strive to make a place better than it was when you arrived. Always challenge yourselves and each other. Love, Live, Laugh and Learn.
Marvin is a charismatic young man and Her Campus is sure will go on to do amazing things. He has a great appreciation and respect for his culture and isn’t afraid to speak up about what his heritage means to him. Marvin will graduate in May and all we have to say is world, get ready for Marvin Logan.