Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Historically Black Colleges and Universities

PRESENTED BY: Meaningful Movies Tacoma
6:30 PM, Wednesday, February 28, 2024 PST
Location: Tacoma - CSL (click for map)

Join us in person, or virtually, for this must-see slice of history. Mark your calendars and be part of this meaningful event honoring and magnifying Black History Month. Register HERE

Directed by award-winning documentary filmmaker Stanley Nelson, Tell Them We Are Rising: The Story of Black Colleges and Universities examines the impact black colleges and universities have had on American history, culture, and national identity. A haven for Black intellectuals, artists, and revolutionaries, and a path of promise toward the American dream. These colleges and universities have educated the architects of freedom movements and cultivated leaders in every field. They have been unapologetically Black for 150 years, and for the first time, their story was told.

The documentary delves into the origins of HBCUs, tracing their roots from the post-Civil War era to the present day. Through a captivating blend of archival footage, interviews with prominent alumni, and insightful commentary from scholars, “Tell Them We Are Rising” unravels the untold stories of how HBCUs became beacons of hope and catalysts for social progress.

As the film unfolds, it becomes a powerful call to action, urging viewers to recognize and appreciate the pivotal role HBCUs have played in shaping the trajectory of American history. “Tell Them We Are Rising” is not just a documentary; it’s a tribute to the indomitable spirit of HBCUs and their enduring legacy in the pursuit of knowledge, equality, and social justice.


Nancy Bristow, Professor at the Univesity of Puget Sound | Race & Pedagogy Institute – Leadership Team

Nancy Bristow pursues research and teaching in the area of 20th-century American history, with an emphasis on race and social change. She is currently researching state-sanctioned violence against African Americans in the Black Power era of the late 1960s and early 1970s. Under contract with Oxford University Press, she is completing the first piece of this project as a teaching text for the college classroom focused on the shootings that took place on the Jackson State College campus, a historically black campus in Jackson, Mississippi, in May 1970. She serves on the leadership team of the Race and Pedagogy Initiative at UPS, is a member of the Organization of American Historians [OAH] and Southern Historical Association, and is currently serving on the editorial board of the OAH’s magazine, The American Historian. We are thrilled to have her join our meaningful conversation!

Paul Jackson, Ph.D. 

Paul is a self-described disruptive technologist who obtained his BS and Masters in computer engineering at an HBCU, followed by his PhD at TX A&M. He has conducted research in augmented and virtual reality within the aerospace industry and has led presentations in Germany, Japan, and several other US cities. Paul brings personal experience to his passion for storytelling and now enjoys his time working on documentaries while teaching others about media and social issues. We are thrilled to have him join our meaningful conversation!

Michael Honey, Ph.D. – Professor Emeritus at the University of Washington, Tacoma

Michael Honey researches and teaches African American history, specifically including the labor movement, southern history, and Martin Luther King, Jr. studies. He has taught at Stanford University, the University of Maryland, the National Humanities Center, the Rockefeller Research Center in Bellagio, Italy, Wesleyan University, the University of Puget Sound, and the University of Washington. He speaks widely and is a distinguished lecturer for the Organization of American Historians. He has received numerous awards from non-academic organizations for his civic engagement, going back to his origins as a civil liberties organizer in the South. A graduate himself of Northern Illinois University (Ph.D.), Howard University (M.A.), and Oakland University (B.A.). He has written five books that won numerous academic awards, including the Robert F. Kennedy Book Award, and we are thrilled to have him join our meaningful conversation!


To attend virtually, register here:

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the meeting.

Cost: Screenings are free; We gratefully accept donations to help offset the costs of presenting the films and guest speakers at our meaningful events.

Special Guests: Nancy Bristow and Michael Honey (Bios above)

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Release Year: 2017

Running Time: 1h 25m

Director: Marco Williams, Stanley Nelson Jr.

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