Bridging Cultures

Date
2012-01-01
Authors
Senty, Kristin
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College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Abstract

She'd been sporting a short Afro, and then showed up in class one day with 500 shoulder length braids woven into her hair. For Ebby Luvaga, a native of Kenya, Africa, the dramatic change in hairstyle was nothing unusual. But for a classroom of Iowa State University freshman, many from small rural Iowa communities, the shift was totally unexpected. "For some students I may be the first person of color they've interacted with," says Luvaga. "In this case, I remember the students were silent and just stared." So she opened her class time with a discussion about black hair care, letting students ask the questions they had on their minds.

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