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April 10, 2012
PRIDE hosts fifth annual Men to Men Summit at HCC
WELDON, N.C. – The Preparing Men for Intellectual, Academic & Educational Success (PRIDE) of Halifax Male Mentoring Program hosted the fifth annual Men to Men Summit at The Centre at Halifax Community College (HCC) on April 4. "Am I My Brother’s Keeper?" was this year’s theme. The keynote speaker was Bakari Sellers of the South Carolina General Assembly and House of Representatives. An estimated 480 people attended the event.

Sellers discussed the questions, "How far have we come?" and "Where do we go from here?" He suggested that we need to dream with our eyes open. He also talked about his work with the Obama campaign in 2008 and how then candidate Barack Obama came to visit his district. This experience caused Sellers to think about how close to home he was, but how far he had come in life. He recommended that everyone chart out their course.

Sellers was born in 1984 and raised in Denmark, South Carolina. He graduated from the South Carolina public school system and then proceeded to Morehouse College. While at Morehouse, he was elected Student Government Association president and served on the College’s board of trustees. He earned a bachelor’s degree in 2005. After graduating from Morehouse College, Sellers attended the University of South Carolina School of Law where he graduated in 2008. He worked for U.S. Congressman James Clyburn and former Atlanta Mayor Shirley Franklin. He is one of the youngest state representatives and the youngest black elected official in the United States.

Sellers has had extensive leadership experience working for the Democratic Leadership Council and Obama for America. He has been a member of the South Carolina Legislative Black Caucus since 2006. Sellers has worked with the Strom Law Firm, LLC since 2007 and currently serves as a member of the South Carolina House of Representatives, where he has represented the 90th District since 2006.

Also during the event, the HCC Principals Excellence and Achievement Award was presented to Melany Paden of Southeast Halifax High School and Dr. Monica Smith-Woofter of Roanoke Valley Early College. The award is given in recognition of outstanding leadership, determination and innovation by increasing student engagement, serving as a mentor to teachers, staff and students and enhancing the learning environment.

The HCC What a Passion—What a Vision Award was presented to Senator Edward “Ed” Jones and North Carolina Community College System Associate Director for Student Success Support Services and Minority Male Mentoring Program Project Manager Monty Hickman. The award is given in recognition of outstanding leadership, determination and community service.

The summit is designed for young men and professionals. Concurrent sessions for students addressed "College and Hip-Hop Culture…Do They Really Go Together?", "How the Images You See in the Media Impact You and Your Sense of Self Worth" and "Reclaiming the Minority Male Image: A Discussion of Clips from ‘A War For Your Soul’ and ‘Bringing Your ‘A’ Game’." For administrators and community organizations, the topic, "Institutional Responsibility in African American Male College Success: Reconnecting the Educational Pipeline and Creating Multiple Pathways to Educational Success" was addressed.

This event was funded in part by the U.S. Department of Education PBI Formula Grant.
Bakari Sellers
Bakari Sellers
Halifax Community College’s Mission
Halifax Community College strives to meet the diverse needs of our community by providing high-quality, accessible and affordable education and services for a rapidly changing and globally competitive marketplace.
Primary Media Contact: Melanie Temple, Director of Public Relations and Marketing, templem@halifaxcc.edu, 252-538-4319

Secondary Media Contact: Dr. Dianne Rhoades, Interim Vice President of Institutional Advancement, Halifax Community College and Interim Executive Director of the Halifax Community College Foundation Inc., rhoadesd@halifaxcc.edu, 252-536-7239