Please register as soon as possible to reserve your spot; as space is limited and registration may not be available at the door.
All conference sessions will be held in the Student Memorial Center (SMC).
If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us either by email or phone!
A block of rooms has been reserved for March 22, 2018 - March 24, 2018 at the DoubleTree Resort by Hilton Hotel Lancaster. The special room rate will be available until February 21st or until the group block is sold-out, whichever comes first.
The DoubleTree Resort is only a 15 minute drive to Millersville's Campus. To begin the process, click on link below to receive your group's preferred rate:
MEET THE PANELISTS
ISMAIL SMITH-WADE-EL is a professional communicator and researcher dedicated to changing his community for the better. Currently, he helps to fund critical social service programs as a grant writer at Lancaster’s Community Action Partnership. Prior to that, he served as research associate for the Mayor’s Commission to Combat Poverty and the lead author of the Commission’s One Good Job, their plan to reduce Lancaster’s poverty by 50%. Ismail’s commitment to his community extends into diverse sectors, and he serves on the boards of the Lancaster County Council of Churches, Crispus Attucks Community Center, and the Lancaster Branch NAACP, and the City’s Public Art Board. Ismail Smith-Wade-El is a published social science researcher, and was also a columnist for Lancaster Newspapers until this spring, when he put his writing on hold to run for City Council. Now serving as a Councilmember in Lancaster City, he looks forward to serving his community in new and deeper ways.
DEDRICK ASANTE-MUHAMMAD, Senior Fellow, Racial Wealth Divide Initiative Dedrick Asante-Muhammad is Senior Fellow of the Racial Wealth Divide Initiative at Prosperity Now (formerly CFED). As Senior Fellow, Dedrick’s responsibilities include strengthening Prosperity Now’s racial wealth divide analysis in its work and highlighting best practices and partnerships that can help address racial economic inequality. Dedrick also supports the Racial Wealth Divide Initiative’s wealth building projects. Before Prosperity Now, Dedrick worked for the NAACP, where he was the Sr. Director of the Economic Department and Executive Director of the Financial Freedom Center. Dedrick has also worked for Rev. Al Sharpton’s National Action Network and the Institute for Policy Studies.
WILLIAM MICHAEL CUNNINGHAM is the founder of Creative Investment Research, where he is Managing Partner for National Crowdfunding Services. A former securities broker and institutional salesman, he works with pension fund trustees, investment managers, community activists, government agencies, and financial industry organizations to create and implement social and community investing initiatives. In February 2006, Cunningham warned the SEC that his Fully Adjusted Return Methodology statistical models signaled the possibility of system-wide economic and market failure. He has testified before the Ways and Means and Financial Services Committees of the U.S. House of Representatives. In an October 1998 petition to the United States Court of Appeals, he opposed the elimination of the Glass Steagall Act, citing evidence that growing financial market malfeasance greatly reduced the safety and integrity of large financial institutions. Cunningham has been involved for twenty years in the provision of online resources to small businesses, including crowdfunding prototypes. An economist, investment advisor, researcher, and social investing policy analyst, he serves as a Capstone student advisor in the Real Estate Program at Georgetown University. A strong advocate for the integration of human values in finance, he involves his students in developing new ways to combine social values and investing. Cunningham holds his MBA in Finance and MA in Economics from the University of Chicago.
COREY B. COLEMAN, ’03, is vice president, external affairs for UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Pennsylvania. As a senior leader for the 267,000-member Medicaid plan, Coleman manages all major programmatic functions and works closely with the sales and marketing outreach teams to foster community investments. Coleman also leads thought leadership initiatives across the state, as well as support key community relationships. He brings a wealth of experience in government affairs, public policy, strategic communications, issues management, and team leadership spanning positions in private industry and state government. Coleman previously served as Executive Deputy Secretary of the Department of Health, where he managed the operations of the major programmatic functions of the department, directly supervising the deputy secretaries for Health Planning and Assessment, Health Promotion and Disease Prevention, Quality Assurance, and Administration, as well as the director of the Chronic Care Office. In addition, he served as principal advisor to the Secretary of Health on all matters relating to departmental program services and formulates and publicly advocates policies related to all areas of the department. Prior to joining the Department of Health, Earlier this year, Mr. Coleman was honored by the Philadelphia Tribune as a 2015 Philadelphia Leader. Mr. Coleman has also been recognized as a 40-under-40 honoree by the Philadelphia Business Journal. He also serves on the board of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern Pennsylvania and is an alumnus of Philadelphia Futures’ Sponsor-A-Scholar Program.
BRITTNEY BROWN, ’18 is the President of the NAACP College Chapter at Millersville University. The college senior is in the University's Honors College, is a Government and Political Affairs major and has minors in Philosophy and African American Studies. She has done and presented research on factors that influence political participation in African American College Students, on Electoral violence and corruption in Nigeria and Ghana and is currently doing research on Mental Health Stigmas and its impact on being elected into office.
THE HONORABLE CURTIS JONES, JR. represents the 4th District of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Currently in his third term, Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr. is the Chairman of Public Safety, Commerce & Economic Development and Vice Chair for Parks & Recreation & Cultural Affairs. Councilman Curtis Jones’, Jr. consistent and dedicated approach has earned him the trust, loyalty, and respect of both his constituents as well as his colleagues. Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr. is a champion for education, an ally for criminal justice, and a friend of the environment. He serves on numerous boards and executive committees, including: The Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and Pennsylvania Crime & Delinquency Commission both appointed by PA Governor Tom Wolf; The Criminal Justice Advisory Board (CJAB), Co-Chair of Special Committee on Criminal Justice Reform.
CASSIAN LEJEUNE, ‘18 is a senior at Millersville University. Originally from New Jersey, she attended Friends Select School in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. While attending Millersville University, she is studying Speech Communication with a focus in Broadcasting and is also an African American Studies minor. Cassian is currently the President of The Black Student Union, a Student Government Association Senator, and the Hip-Hop director for Millersville’s radio station WIXQ 91.7.
CAROL KUNIHOLM is co-founder and chair of Fair Districts PA, a non-partisan, all-volunteer coalition working on redistricting reform in Pennsylvania. Since the start of the coalition in January, 2016 she has presented information on gerrymandering to audiences across the state and on local and national radio and TV. She is also Vice President of Government and Social Policy on the state board of the League of Women Voters of Pennsylvania. She received a PhD in American literature from the University of Pennsylvania, worked for over a decade as youth pastor at the Church of the Good Samaritan in Paoli and lives in Exton with her husband, Whitney.
DANIELLE BROWN, ’00 has served as the Principal at McKinley K-8 in York City School District since August, 2013. As the Principal of McKinley, Ms. Brown’s focus is rigor, relevance and relationships. She believes that relationships with students, staff and families are foundational to moving McKinley forward. Ms. Brown has a strong focus on instruction and believes that she serves the best students and staff in the world. Danielle Brown grew up in the City of Lancaster, where she graduated from J.P. McCaskey High School in 1996. She attended Millersville University where she earned both her Bachelors and Master’s Degree. Ms. Brown served as a Mathematics teacher, Instructional Coach and Assistant Principal in Lancaster City School District before joining York City School District. Currently Ms. Brown is pursuing her ED.D in Educational Leadership at Millersville and Shippensburg Universities. Ms. Brown lives in Lancaster City with her two sons, Elijah and Micah.
BRIANNA SMITH, ’18, is a senior at Millersville University studying Business Administration with a concentration in Management. Ms. Smith graduated from Girard College High School in Philadelphia, PA in the same neighborhood from where she grew up. As an Undergraduate, Brianna was a former member of the Student Business Association here on Millersville's campus serving as the fundraising chair, and currently the Vice President of the Black Student Union.
DR. OSMAN SULIMAN is a Professor of Economics at Millersville University, where he served as Department Chair from 1993-2007. In 2007 he took a sabbatical leave to write a book entitled, The Darfur Conflict: Geography or Institutions. Over the period 2010-2013 he served as Dean of the College of Business, University of Sharjah, UAE. Dr. Suliman has over sixty publications in refereed journals, book chapters, and book publications.
DR. IRVIN SCOTT, ’89, joined the faculty of Harvard Graduate School of Education in 2016. His concentration there is Educational Leadership. Irvin is excited about his work teaching at HGSE in the School Leadership Program and Doctor of Education Leadership Program. “Both programs are producing amazing leaders who are doing great things on behalf of children throughout the country,” he says. Scott is also the lead faculty of the new Leadership Institute for Faith and Education (L.I.F.E) initiative, which is focused on understanding the role faith organizations can play in helping to improve educational outcomes. Before coming to Harvard, Irvin served for five years as the deputy director for K–12 education at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where he led the investment of $300 million in initiatives focused on transforming how teachers are recruited, developed, and rewarded. At the Foundation, Scott also led a team to initiate the Elevating and Celebrating Effective Teaching and Teachers experience, which has become a teacher-driven movement and can be found in a majority of states across the country. Look up #ECET2 to learn more. Also, in an effort to address educational inequities in the U.S., Dr. Scott led an effort at the Foundation to build strong partnerships and deeper engagement between faith-based organizations that serve underrepresented students, families, and communities. Over his nearly 30 years in Education, Scott has been Chief Academic Officer and Assistant Superintendent of High Schools for Boston Public Schools; a High School Principal at McCaskey East High School in Lancaster, Pennsylvania; and a High School English Teacher at McCaskey High School – the job he’s loved the most. Irvin holds a bachelor’s degree from Millersville University; a master’s degree in education from Temple University; and a master’s and doctoral degree from Harvard University.
DR. IBRAM X. KENDI, an award-winning historian and New York Times best-selling author, is Professor of History and International Relations and the Founding Director of the Antiracist Research and Policy Center at American University. His second book, Stamped from the Beginning: The Definitive History of Racist Ideas in America, was published by Nation Books and won the 2016 National Book Award for Nonfiction. At 34 years old, Kendi was the youngest ever winner of the NBA for Nonfiction. Kendi has published fourteen essays in books and academic journals, including The Journal of African American History, Journal of Social History, Journal of Black Studies, Journal of African American Studies, and The Sixties: A Journal of History, Politics and Culture.
ALUMNI PROFILE SURVEY
Please lend your support by taking 5 minutes to complete this survey, and encourage other MU alumni of color with whom you have maintained contact to do so, whether they graduated or not. This survey will further affirm the original contention of the BSA and allies such as the Students for Progressive Action, that the turn toward inclusion would benefit the University [as a whole], as well as the alumni of color, their communities and the nation. Thank you.
THE IMPERATIVE OF INCLUSION:
In 1897, Emmanuel Epps became the first known African American to graduate from the Millersville Normal School, now Millersville University (MU). It would be more than 70 years, with the formation of the Black Students Association (BSA) at Millersville State College in 1967-68, that inclusion would become an intentional policy of the University. Within a year of its formation, the BSA confronted the administration and the faculty with 16 Demands encompassing inclusiveness in: enrollment; hiring of faculty, staff and administrators; student life; and academic programs. These Demands met with passionate acceptance and passionate resistance. Nonetheless, within two years of the Demands, more African American and other students of color were enrolled at MU than in the 70+ years since the graduation of Emmanuel Epps. As you know from your era at MU and subsequent visits, inclusion has evolved at MU in a myriad of important ways in the past half century across all aspects of the University from the ongoing contributions of many individuals and organizations of students, faculty, staff and the administration.
Let us recognize and celebrate what has been hard won progress and important milestones for our University. Unfortunately, we are now confronted with highly visible and determined efforts in our society to turn back the clock of America’s evolving greatness to which inclusion or diversity has been a vital part. This is a wake-up call that we cannot assume that progress achieved is permanent and will inevitably continue.
On the occasion of the 50th anniversary of its founding, the BSU is spearheading a Spring Conference and Gala with the theme The Imperative of Inclusion: A Celebration and The Work That Remains. All past and present members of our University Community and the public are invited to join in this Celebration. It will kick-off with a Keynote Speech at 7:30 pm on Thursday, March 22, 2018. Following that will be a full day Conference on the work that remains and an upbeat and rocking evening Gala on Friday, March 23, 2018.
STEERING COMITTEE MEMEBERS
Dr. Melvin R. Allen ‘69, Co-Chair
Ms. Brittney Brown ‘18, Co-Chair
Ms. Sandy Brown Thomas ‘76
Ms. Denise Berg, Director, Alumni Relations
Mr. Aaron Dread ‘94
Ms. Cheryl Hodges
Ms. Patricia Hopson-Shelton
Mr. Dwight Horsey, BSU Advisor
Ms. Cassian LeJeune ‘18, Co-Chair
Ms. Alice McMurry, VP, Advancement
Ms. Jodie Richardson ‘16
Ms. Brianna Smith ‘18
Dr. Rita Smith Wade-El
Dr. Joseph A. Caputo, MU President Emeritus
Dr. Francine G. McNairy, MU President Emerita
Honorable Jordan Harris ‘06, Representative, PA General Assembly and Member, Millersville Council of Trustees
The Steering Committee wishes to express its appreciation to the University Administration and the Student Senate for their support of the 50th BSA/BSU Anniversary Celebration.
BLACK STUDENT ASSOCIATION / UNION
Black Student Association- Founding Member 1967-68
Melvin Allen, ’69. Now retired, Melvin enjoyed rewarding careers as an associate professor of philosophy and a university administrator during his __ years at MU, as an attorney in private practice, and as a foundation president for over 25 years for Project Forward Leap. Education: He gave lifelong service to community, state and national organizations and boards concerned with social justice, equal educational opportunity and pro bono legal services for various causes, civic engagement, drug policy reform and reproductive rights; and he received numerous awards for advocacy and service in those areas. He graduated from Millersville State College with a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy. His scholarship also includes Juris Doctor, The Dickinson School of Law; ABD Philosophy, Temple University; Visiting Scholar in Philosophy, Harvard University and University of Vienna (Austria).
50th Anniversary Gala Honoree
Dr. Smith-Wade-El is a Full Professor in the Psychology Department at Millersville University of Pennsylvania. She is also coordinator of African American Studies. Dr. Smith-Wade-El received her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from Barnard College, Columbia University, and her Master of Arts and Doctorate of Philosophy in Psychology from University of Pennsylvania. Before coming to Millersville, she was a tenured faculty of Psychology in the Department of Pan-African Studies, Temple University. She also taught in Women Studies. Dr. Smith-Wade-El has held teaching positions at East Stroudsburg State University, St. Joseph's University, and University of Pennsylvania.
1971 Black Student Association (BSA)
known today as the Black Student Union (BSU)
2013 Black Student Union (BSU)
formerly known as the Black Student Association (BSA)
March 22, 2018
(NO REGISTRATION REQUIRED)
7:30 p.m. Keynote Speaker: Dr. Ibrahim X. Kendi - Reighard Hall All Purpose Room, Student Memorial Center
March 23, 2018
(REGISTRATION REQUIRED FOR ALL EVENTS)
(9:00 am - Student Memorial Center)
BOOSTING EDUCATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT
(9:40 am – 10:50 am)
This session will focus primarily upon K-12 school improvement, college academic support programs, and closing the STEM achievement gap.
Chair: Dr. Irvin Scott, Senior Lecturer, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University
- Ms. Danielle Brown,’00, Principal, McKinley Elementary School, School District of York (PA)
- Dr. Tolani Britton, Quantitative Policy Analysis in Education, Graduate School of Education, Harvard University
POLITICS AND SOCIAL JUSTICE
(11:00 am – 12:10 pm)
This session will focus upon confronting such anti-democratic, societal trends as increasing obstacles to voter registration and gerrymandering, criminal justice abuses and disparities, and hate speech.
Chair: Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr., Philadelphia City Council
- Representative Jordan Harris, Pennsylvania General Assembly
- Ismail Smith-Wade-El, City Council Member, City of Lancaster, Pennsylvania
- Ms. Brittney Brown, ’18, Millersville University Student and President, MU NAACP Chapter
- Ms. Carol Kuniholm, Co-Founder & President, Fair Districts PA
(12:10 pm – 1:00 pm)
This session will focus upon the racial wealth gap and ways of addressing it through entrepreneurship, stabilizing and greater access to higher paying jobs and government investment and intervention.
Chair: Dr. Osman Suliman, Professor of Economics, Millersville University
- Dedrick Asante-Muhammad, Senior Fellow, Racial Wealth Divide Initiative
- Mr. William Cunningham, Founder, Creative Investment Research; and Managing Partner, National Crowdfunding Services
- Councilman Curtis Jones, Jr., Philadelphia City Council
- Ms. Briana Smith, ’18, Millersville University Student
THE WORK THAT REMAINS
(2:35 pm – 3:45 pm)
This session will focus upon the concerns of BSU students, alumni, faculty and friends, especially on improving retention of students and staff, graduation and the campus climate at MU.
Chair: Representative Jordan Harris, PA General Assembly and MU Council of Trustees
- Ms. Brittney Brown, ’18, President, MU NAACP Chapter
- Mr. Corey Coleman, ‘03, Vice President, External Affairs for UnitedHealthcare Community Plan of Pennsylvania
- Ms. Cassian LeJeune, ’18, President, MU Black Student Union
(6:15 pm - Lehr, Gordinier Hall)
This will be a festive evening of fellowship consisting of a reception, banquet and semi-formal dance. Tributes will be paid to honorees during the evening.
- 6:15 p.m. - Reception
- 7:00 p.m. - Celebration Banquet
- 8:45 p.m. - Semi-Formal Dance