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UCLA Ed & IS Celebrates Juneteenth

By John McDonald

On June 19th, 1865, in Galveston, Texas Union Major General Gordon Granger issued General Order Number 3:

“The people of Texas are informed that in accordance with a proclamation from the Executive of the United States, all slaves are free.” 

That day, more than two years after President Abraham Lincoln had issued the Emancipation Proclamation declaring “all persons held as slaves” within the rebellious states “are, and henceforward shall be free,” marked the end of slavery in the United States.  Since then, the day has been recognized and celebrated by many across the nation as “Juneteenth.

In 2021, President Joseph R. Biden, in recognition of the importance of the events ending the enslavement of Blacks in the United States and the celebration of Black culture and accomplishment, signed legislation establishing Juneteenth as a federal holiday. 

On Monday, UCLA and the other Universities and offices of the University of California will close in observance of this our newest national holiday.  

One way we can celebrate Juneteenth is to offer our congratulations to our talented and diverse recent class of graduates.  In 2022, 18 Black students graduated from doctoral programs in the UCLA School of Education and Information Studies.  

But as we celebrate, we recognize that our work to support the full participation of Black Americans and other students of color in the opportunities our university and other institutions of higher education can provide, remains unfinished. There is more to learn and more to be done. 

As so as we mark this new holiday, we hope that our students, staff, faculty and friends will take some time to learn and think more about the importance of Juneteenth and the ongoing battle for racial equity and justice. 

One place to start is with an article we published last year, Why Schools Haven’t Taught about Juneteenth, and Why They Should, offering some important insight and perspective from Eddie Cole, an associate professor of higher education and organizational change at the UCLA School of Education and Information Studies.

The UCLA Office of Equity, Diversity and Inclusion also offers at toolkit for learning about Juneteenth.

 And if you are looking for resources for   teaching about Juneteenth, the UCLA History and Geography Project at UCLA Center X suggests resources available from Learning for Justice.  

In addition, Assistant Professor of Education Jessica Harris suggests a list of resources for us to explore, work toward, and learn about race, racism, and anti-racism in the context of the United States. 

We hope that you will also take time to celebrate the Juneteenth holiday.  Here are a few suggestion of events and activities in the Los Angeles area.  Enjoy!

Juneteenth: A Global Celebration of Freedom: An All-star Juneteenth concert at Hollywood Bowl will feature first all-Black orchestra in the  Bowl’s 100-year history. The June 19 concert will be broadcast live at 5 p.m. on CNN. Or attend live. Tickets and more information here.  

2022 Liberation: A Festival of Arts & Culture Honoring Juneteenth

Opal’s Walk for Freedom – Juneteenth event: Opal Lee, the “grandmother of Juneteenth,” has been walking 2.5 miles for many years to advocate for Juneteenth to be made a federal holiday. The 2.5 mile walk in Pacoima begins June 18 at 8 a.m. Register in advance online at 

 The City of Pasadena’s 14th annual Juneteenth Celebration: A free, family-friendly Juneteenth celebration featuring drummers and dancers from the Alkebulan Cultural Center, live music provided by Luv From Abuv, and spoken word performed by Pasadena City College students. Arts and crafts, line dancing, inflatable games and free food.. Saturday, June 18, 10a.m. to 2 p.m.,  North Fair Oaks Avenue in Pasadena. More Information here

Taste of Compton - A Juneteenth Celebration:  Arts and crafts, live music, housing and small business workshops. Hosted by Neighborhood Housing Services of LA County. 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday, June 18, at the NHS Center for Sustainable Communities, 1051 W. Rosecrans Ave., Compton. 

Crenshaw Family YMCA – Juneteenth Unifest: The second annual Juneteenth event with games, performances, speakers, financial literacy workshops and Black-owned business vendors, June 18, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. 3820 Santa Rosalia Drive, Los Angeles. Register in advance:

Juneteenth Freedom Day Walk: The event begins with a walk and also includes a resource fair, live music, wellness stations and Covid-19 vaccinations. Saturday, June 18, 1-6 p.m. The event is presented by the Black Mental Health Task ForceLos Angeles County Department Mental HealthSan Gabriel Valley African American Infant and Maternal Mortality Community Action Team. Registration and info at

The Long Beach Juneteenth Celebration: Music, food, fun and more. Saturday, June 18, 10.30 a.m. to 7 PM Rainbow Lagoon Park, 400 E Shoreline Dr, Long Beach, CA. More Info -

 Juneteenth Rhythm & Blues: The City of Carson and Carson Citizens Cultural Arts Foundation presents the “The Best History Lesson Ever,” with music by the Calloway Brothers and Greg Rose and the Greg Rose Orchestra, a car show, vendors and a teen fun zone, June 19, 11 a.m.-6 p.m. .Mills Park, 1340 E. Dimondale Drive, Carson. Details:

Kingdom Day Parade: The parade, usually held in January in honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, will take place on Monday, June  20 at11 a.m. The theme is “Healing America.” Parade route: Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard at Western Avenue, west on MLK Jr. to Crenshaw Boulevard, south on Crenshaw to West Vernon Avenue, Los Angeles.

The University of California, Office of the President, also offers a list of events to celebrate.

 And a listing even more events is available from the Los Angeles Times at: