Royal Flush, a Black History Month event celebrating notable black scientists, entertained and informed the Sacramento State community on Thursday.
The event featured five exhibits that highlighted the accomplishments of African-Americans. Notable astronomers, professors, directors, pharmacists and inventors were recognized for their influence in the community.
About 40 students took part in the event, which was hosted by the National Society of Black Engineersand Zeta Phi Beta.
Royal Flush was the idea of senior engineering majors Marissa Romero, secretary and treasurer for the society,and Malia Lamons, the society’s president.
Romero said the event was held to honor Black History Month and bring attention to innovative African-American individuals.
“We want people to learn about them, but we also wanted to incorporate the games to make it fun,” she said.
Designed to look like a casino, the event had a roulette table, poker, dominos and blackjack set up for students. Prizes were awarded for students who won games.
Ryan McGaugh, senior mechanical engineering major, said it is important to expose African-American students to inventors who may not be as well known as Benjamin Franklin or the Wright brothers.
“It’s important just to remind people that you can do whatever you want to do regardless of circumstances,” McGaugh said.
Montie Easter, a junior civil engineering major said Royal Flush was a fun event that allows important African-American inventors to be recognized.
“When you think about celebrated black individuals, you think of political figures like Martin Luther King Jr and Malcolm X, but usually not those who helped develop the telephone, the streetlight, and the Ford engine,” Easter said.
Senior business accounting major Siah Gaye took part of the event to present his cause “The No Brainer Foundation,” a program that provides tutoring and mentoring for at-risk high school students in the community.
He said a lot of people don’t know much about the history of black invention except what is mainstream.
“I’m really glad that NSBE is participating in Black History Month since it seems like something that is becoming less important every year,” Gaye said.
Sean Keister can be reached at [email protected]