“ATSU Reflects on Black History Month” is a series of personal statements from A.T. Still University faculty, staff, and students. This installment features Dawn Shaffer, BA, CCEP, CHC, compliance manager, office of vice president & general counsel.
To me, Black History Month is about having a tender heart and an informed mind, so I can overcome injustice in my own thoughts and actions, and hopefully contribute to the same for others.
I recently read “The Warmth of Other Suns” by Isabel Wilkerson, which I highly recommend. I found I still have a lot to learn about what my fellow human beings experienced and suffered in the past, and still suffer. I hope having my eyes opened to the pain of people of color, in the past and the present, will help me be more empathetic in all my personal relationships. I hope it will help me to be slower in forming judgments and conclusions and to filter what I read and hear, and even my own thoughts.
Black History Month challenges me to be willing to be uncomfortable, to have awkward moments with people, and even to fail, in learning to understand and love others who are not in my own little circle.