Genealogist to present about DNA tests for Black History Month

Bernice Bennett will present "The Role of DNA and Genealogy" for Black History month presentation at the Illinois-Mississippi Room at the Morris University Center Tuesday from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m.

DNA knows nothing about race.

At least, according to Bernice Bennett, a family historian, genealogist, guest lecturer, talk show host and author.

“DNA is what it is,” Bennett said. “Most people are mixed and they will see this blending of admixture (racial mixing) in the DNA results.

Bennett will present “The Role of DNA and Genealogy” as part of a lecture series on campus for Black History month. It will be held Tuesday from 11 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Morris University Center in the Illinois-Mississippi Room.

She will discuss types of available DNA tests to trace ancestral lineage and how the results can add to one’s genealogical journey. Bennett said she will emphasize the value of knowing and understanding family history and how this knowledge can strengthen pride in ancestral roots. She will also provide additional resources to help attendees understand and analyze their DNA findings.

Bennett said she will show the value of one’s family history and DNA tests.

“DNA test results can verify the paper trail of someone you believe to be your relative, or it can identify new relatives, someone not in your family tree that connects back to your ancestors,” Bennett said.

Bennett will explain two case studies: one to demonstrate how knowledge of family history and the integration with DNA tests results helped to connect an adoptee to her birth family. The other case study will show how the genealogical paper trail was verified with DNA results.

Black Studies Program Director Prince Wells said through Bennett’s presentation, people will learn “to appreciate history” and “rediscover one’s family.”

“Our understanding of race is a myth. It’s not black and white. In this country people of ethnic and racial backgrounds are more blended,” Wells said.

Anee Korme, assistant director of campus life at Kimmel Student Involvement Center, said the Black Committee wanted to connect people of all races to the event.

“The idea is in exploring genealogy and family history that people of multiple ethnicities share similar histories,” Korme said.

Wells said the event will present the significance of African-American history and personalize it.

“It is my firm opinion that the history of African-American families is as significant as any event in African-American history. Every family can join in this history,” Wells said. “Many people labeled white have African-American ancestry.”

Bennett is the president and founder of BB’s Genealogy Research and Education Services and serves as host of her own Blogtalkradio show “Research at the National Archives and Beyond.”

Be Sociable, Share!

Filed Under: Black StudiesGeneral CAS Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.

Switch to our mobile site