Kent University Features Zayn Malik And Sadiq Khan For Black History Month Poster, Slammed

By , UniversityHerald Reporter

Kent University is facing backlash for choosing to feature Zayn Malik and Sadiq Khan for its Black History Month poster. The institution has been deemed as a "national embarrassment."

The Daily Mail reported that students at Kent University were furious after the institution chose Zayn Malik and Sadiq Khan as poster boys for Black History Month. Obviously, the two celebrities were not black. They both came from British Pakistani families.

Organizers of the U.K. Black History Month were "deeply disappointed" at the student union of the university for including Malik and Khan on the list of six public figures to represent diversity. Other celebrities on Kent University Union's list were broadcaster Sir Trevor McDonald, athlete Dame Kelly Holmes, singer Shirley Bassey and footballer Arthur Wharton.

"Deeply disappointed at Kent Union's ill thought and misdirected Black History Month celebrations," the official Twitter account of Black History Month U.K. posted on Twitter. "With Asian Heritage Month being observed by a growing number of countries in May, will Black icons be celebrated by Kent University then?" it said in another tweet.

Sadiq Khan was born in London in 1970. He was one of eight children his parents, who migrated from Pakistan to Britain, had. Former One Direction member Zayn Malik, on the other hand, was born in Bradford in 1993 to British Pakistani parents.

According to Telegraph, Kent University has issued an apology for the mishap. However, students still described the mistake as "an absolute non-apology" and a "national embarrassment."

"At this point Kent Union has become a national embarrassment," Benjamin Smith wrote. "From what I'm seeing, this post doesn't really cover the extent of the offense you've caused and comes across as a bit patronizing."

Universities and colleges still have a long way to go in terms of diversity and inclusion. It was previously reported that Purdue University set up a holistic discussion on the Black Lives Matter movement as part of a lecture series. It was hosted by the African American Studies and Research Center.

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