05/07/2014 01:58 EDT | Updated 07/07/2014 05:59 EDT

Nova Scotia students submit dozens of possible names for February holiday

HALIFAX - Students from across Nova Scotia have submitted 75 suggestions on what to name the province's new holiday in February.

Primary to Grade 12 classes were invited to submit ideas for a general, permanent name for the holiday, as well as suggestions for significant cultural and historic events that will be recognized each year.

The holiday's permanent name and the next 12 historic and cultural contributions will be announced by a three-member panel by the end of the school year.

The first February holiday in 2015 will recognize human rights pioneer Viola Desmond, a black woman who was jailed and fined in 1946 for refusing to give up her seat in the whites-only section of a New Glasgow, N.S., theatre.

Advanced Education Minister Kelly Regan says the holiday will be used to highlight the many people, places and things that make up Nova Scotia's diverse culture and history.

Beginning in 2015, the holiday will fall on the third Monday in February.