Black History Month: Q&A with Dr. Krystal HaysRiverside, Calif. (Feb. 15, 2024)In honor of Black History Month, we are highlighting staff and faculty members who are a pivotal part of California Baptist University.

This week, we spoke with Dr. Krystal Hays, associate professor of social work and program director of the Doctor of Social Work (DSW) program.

What does Black History Month mean to you?
Black history is something my family and I celebrate all year long. However, the month of February is a special time when collectively as a country we can reflect on our shared past and present. It’s a time of lament and gratitude. A time for food, laughter, storytelling and hope for the future.

Why is it important that we celebrate the month?
Throughout the Bible we see countless times when God instructs his people to remember significant events. Often this comes in the form of celebrations, festivals and monuments. That’s because God knows we have short memories. We often forget how disobedient we are and how faithful He is. Just like the children of Israel, we are prone to repeat our mistakes and turn away from our gracious God if we don’t take time to remember our history. Black History Month is especially important for the Christian community because it gives us a chance to remember the past, grieve the ways we’ve disobeyed God when it comes to our treatment of Black Americans, ask forgiveness, and thank God for his loving grace. We can also celebrate all the amazing things God is doing to create diverse communities that reflect His love for all people.

Which black leader in history has had the greatest impact on your life and why?
I’ve always loved stories about Madame CJ Walker who was an entrepreneur and innovated the black hair care industry. I spent many years as a hairdresser, so I always looked up to her.

Why is it important to use Black History Month as a time to reflect on, think about and celebrate Black history and culture?
There are so many great things to celebrate about black culture from the food, music, dress, dance and language. Black history is American history so we can all celebrate.

Contact CBU Marketing and Communication

Vice President for Marketing and Communication:
Angela Meluski

8432 Magnolia Avenue
Riverside, CA 92504