On Thursday, Dec.16 at 3 p.m., the Black Organizations Council will hold the 33rd annual Donning of the Kente ceremony in the Old Dominion Ballroom at Squires Student Center.

The ceremony celebrates the current accomplishments of graduating students of color and the history of black student achievements at Virginia Tech. It is free and open to the public, and family and friends are encouraged to attend as an important part of this recognition ceremony.

During the ceremony, participating graduates will be draped in the stripes of Kente, a colorful cloth stole native to Ghana. Though Kente was developed in the 17th century by the Ashanti people, it has its roots in a long tradition of African weaving, dating back to about 3000 B.C. Often reserved for special occasions or royalty, the stole is a visual representation of history, philosophy, ethics, oral literature, religious beliefs, social values, and political thoughts.

For more information on the Donning of the Kente ceremony and other upcoming multicultural programs, visit the Multicultural Programs and Services website.

With a visitor’s pass, parking is available in the Squires Lot, located at the corner of College Avenue and Otey Street, or the Shultz Hall Lot, located off Alumni Drive near the North Main Street campus entrance. Parking meters within the Squires Lot will need to be paid. A visitor’s pass may be obtained Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Visitor Information Center, located on Southgate Drive. Find more parking information online or call (540) 231-3200.