Sunday, February 28, 2010

Famous African American Penn Staters

The Penn State Alumni Association was kind enough to ask me to put together a talk and kick off their 2010 City Lights Speaker Series on February 28. The event was at Pittsburgh's new August Wilson Center, and tours of the cultural landmark were offered before and after my keynote. I particularly enjoyed the Teenie Harris photographs.

City Lights presentation

My presentation consisted of three parts. First, a brief overview of African
Americans in higher education and at the University. Second, brief profiles of
Black alumni who are famous both around the world and across the state,
including right here in Pittsburgh and western Pennsylvania. Third, I highlighted a few University leaders whose work continues the Black tradition at Penn State and create an environment where faculty, staff, and students of all races can be successful.

I enjoyed researching and putting together my presentation. The staff at the Penn State University Archives provided me with many wonderful historical images. The feedback from the audience was overwhelmingly positive. I'm glad that one of my campus faculty colleagues was able to attend and lend her support. As a bonus she ran into one of her former students there.

My thanks again to the Penn State Alumni Association for this opportunity.

City Lights presentation

Photos from the event are here.