She stared down at a muddle of D’s and F’s on his eighth-grade report card and threatened to kick him out. He had barely passed elementary school, and high school wasn’t even on his radar.
“Something just clicked,” Alexander, now 18, said. “I knew I had to do something.”
On Friday, Alexander proudly swapped his high school’s red uniform tie for a striped red and gold one — the ritual at Englewood’s Urban Prep Academy for Young Men that signifies a student has been accepted into college. 100 percent of its first senior class has been accepted to four-year colleges. What an accomplishment, this is something all parents and teachers must demand from all educational institutions.
When a teacher friend of mine fought the LAUSD for a Black male program to separate and focus on the the particular issues this demographic faces, he was denied due to a perception of inequitable “reverse discrimination”.
Do you think an all male classroom setting with a strong recruitment of African American male teachers with shared and practiced values and expectations can make a difference in the lives of urban Black males who are dropping out of high school at a faster rate than graduating?
Our fierce leader and most committed Public Servant Hero
The first, but not the last, African American President, Barrack Obama.
Ursula Burns, a native New Yorker who grew up in the lower East Side housing projects has risen to become the first African American CEO of a Fortune 500 company, Xerox.
The 50-year-old boss started with Xerox in 1980 as a summer mechanical engineering intern. She worked her way up the corporate ladder from there and work for the company in product development and planning. From 1992 through 2000, she led several business teams including the office color and fax business and office network printing business. In 2000, she was named senior vice president, Corporate Strategic Services, heading up manufacturing and supply chain operations. the CEO position. She has also been a member of the board of directors since 2007.
A graduate of Polytechnic Institute of NYU, Burns also holds a master of science degree in mechanical engineering from Columbia University. She serves on several professional and community boards, including American Express, The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, MIT, the U.S. Olympic Committee and the University of Rochester.
What an example…bravo
I define religion as mans interpretation of divine existence. This is a way for man to get comfortable with living with the unknown. The alternative is living in fear. God heals fear. While you walk through the valley of death, you will fear not. As you lay on your death bed, you will fear not. For God is your answer…beholden unto peace.
Regardless of if you pray to Saints, Jesus or Allah; if it brings you peace at heart and harmony with nature, it is complete.
On September 15, 1963, Addie Mae Collins- 14, Carole Robertson-14, Cynthia Wesley-14, and Denise McNair-11, were in the basement of the 16th Street Baptist Church in Birmingham, Alabama. They were preparing for the 11:00am service when a dynamite bomb exploded, killing them and injuring other members of the church.
Sacrifices can be honored or ignored. Prices where paid, we must remember and push towards national, cultural and inner peace.
20 years ago before today, Nelson Mandela stepped out of South Africa’s Victor Verster prison a free man. He was his country’s most famous freedom fighter. He was convicted of treason in 1964 and given a life sentence for opposing South African apartheid. He served 27 years before receiving a pardon.
Once free, Mandela worked with South Africa’s white president, F.W. de Klerk to end those policies, knocking down the pillars of segregation one at a time. Three years after his release from prison, Mandela and de Klerk shared the Nobel Peace Prize. The African National Congress that was banned in 1961 was once again legal, elected Mandela as its presidential candidate. Mandela won South Africa’s presidential election in a landslide in 1994, the country’s first black president.
“We dedicate this day to all the heroes and heroines in this country and the rest of the world who sacrificed in many ways and surrendered their lives so that we could be free,” he said in his inauguration speech. “Their dreams have become reality. Freedom is their reward. We are both humbled and elevated by the honor and privilege that you, the people of South Africa, have bestowed on us, as the first President of a united, democratic, non-racial and non-sexist government.”
“I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination,” he said. “I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons will live together in harmony, and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for, and to see realized. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.”
“I have traveled this long road to freedom,” he wrote. “I trust I did not falter. I made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that, after crossing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to cross.”
Twenty years ago, there was no freedom for Mandela, no freedom for black South Africans. There may be more hills to cross, but black South Africans are no longer strangers to freedom.