CORVALLIS, Ore. – Faculty members from Oregon State University have developed a film series focused on social justice and the struggle for equality and the inaugural event on May 17 will feature OSU basketball coach Craig Robinson and former coach Paul Valenti as part of a panel discussion.
This free public event begins at 4:30 p.m. in the Founders Loge at Reser Stadium (second floor, east side entrance).
Created by the Association of Faculty for the Advancement of People of Color at OSU, the “Power of One Film Series” will feature films based on individuals who have had an impact in changing society through their struggle to bring about social justice.
The first film in the series is “Glory Road,” based on the true story of Don Haskins, the head coach at Texas Western College in El Paso in the mid-1960s. Haskins was the first Division One basketball coach to recruit and play a full team of African American athletes against white athletes in a major tournament. Haskins broke an unwritten code of team segregation that had existed since basketball became a major sport on colleges across the United States and his desegregated team won the NCAA championship in his first year of coaching.
Clips from the film will be shown and a brief historical overview of OSU basketball will be provided. A panel discussion will follow that focuses on the desegregation of basketball across the United States and at OSU.
The open discussion will include Robinson, who has coached the OSU men’s basketball team since 2008; former coach Valenti, who in 1965 brought about the desegregation of the OSU basketball program; Charlie White, the first African American OSU basketball player recruited with a full scholarship in 1965; Norman Monroe, first African American walk-on player; and Larry Griggs, a former collegiate player and director of the OSU Educational Opportunities Program from 1985 through 2008.
The panelists will discuss their experiences in coaching, playing and coping within a culture of segregation.
For more information on the series, contact Dwaine Plaza at 541-737-5369 or Alex Sanchez at 541-737-8202. The event is co-sponsored by the OSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics.