Anahsza Jones| Correspondent
On April 22, forty people gathered in Talley for the TRIO SSS Programs End of Year Celebration. The crowd was comprised of parents, faculty, and of course, the TRIO scholars.
The purpose of the TRIO programs is to encourage students who will be first in their immediate family to receive a degree from a four year university, financially under resourced, received a Pell Grant, and/or registered with student disability services.
Courtney Simpson, the program director for the TRIO Student Support Services program, said “Our goal is to make sure our students are academically successful, return each year and continue in their chosen major, and make sure our students are graduating in less than six years…It’s to make sure these students are provided with academic, personal, career, and financial literacy type of support.”
At the event, TRIO recognized their twenty-eight graduating seniors and gave awards to those students who they feel have gone above and beyond in their commitment to the program. “These are the students who really embody what it means to be TRIO and I have no problem knowing that these students will sell our program because they have really benefitted from the program,” said Simpson.
Ashley Walker, a senior in zoology and environmental science and valedictorian in both the College of Sciences and the College of Natural Resources was asked to be the student speaker for the event. In her speech she made a point to encourage students to “Overcome your fears, take a step into the dark, and shine.”
Maya Hart, senior in psychology, TRIO ambassador and recipient of the Senior Achiever Award said, “[TRIO] has helped me in ways I didn’t even know I needed…Trio is in my heart, and that’s why I try to do all I can for it.” Hart will be working with NC State College Advising Corps and one day hopes to open her own social work private practice, using the personal and professional skills she has learned by being part of TRIO.
Shaquilla Hamlett, junior in animal science and also a TRIO ambassador and recipient of the Rising Achiever Award “I wanted to have a support system…and the passion and the dedication that they gave to their students filled me with encouragement.”
TRIO was honored to have Dr. Valerie K Fields, founder of V.K. Fields & Co., share her experiences and advice with their guests. Fields called TRIO an inspiring program to be a part of, and expressed her pride in the students she saw gathered at the event. “I think we all need to hear that; ‘we are proud of you’…and the world is waiting for leaders like you,” said Fields.
Nyna Nickelson | Correspondent
The African American Cultural Center, which has been celebrating its 25th anniversary this year, will host the annual Ebony Harlem Awards Sunday, May 1. Because of the big milestone the award ceremony’s theme this year will be “25 Proverbs for 25 years”.
This year the African American Cultural Center and the AYA Ambassadors partnered with the office of Multicultural Student Affairs to host the Ebony Harlem Awards, which recognizes extraordinary African-Americans who excel in a particular field, have a penchant for community-based activism that lifts up the African-American community and are actively engaged in the centers.
“Ebony Harlem was conceptualized by the creators of the African American Cultural Center Dr. Augustus Witherspoon and Dr. [Lawrence] Clark wanted to make sure that African-American students in particular understood the value of using their brilliance to build their community and to promote the mission of the African American Cultural Center,” says “Mama” Toni Thorpe, the program coordinator for the African American Cultural Center.
Each year candidates are nominated for several categories such as, art, photography, music, literature, leadership and academics. This year the center has added a category for faculty and staff. Each nominee must be in good academic standing and must receive at least two nominations to be added to a ballot of nominees.
Students votes’ are tallied and winners are announced at the event.
Each winner will receive a plaque with a Sankofa bird, the Adinkra symbol of the African American Cultural Center and a literal representation of one of the African proverbs, referenced in this year’s theme: “It is not taboo to to go back and fetch that which you have forgotten.”
“We have a collection of 25 proverbs that the community came up with that symbolize the center, they represent our culture ” says the AYA Ambassador president Kinesha Harris.
The night will not only include the award ceremony but also dancing.
“It will be lit,” said Mama Thorpe.
“Ebony Harlem is important because we may not always [be] recognized on the university level, we may not be on the website, you may not scroll through and see us but we are here. ” says Harris.
Jordan Anderson the vice president of Aya Ambassador added, “Ebony Harlem is acknowledging what we see everyday. We know what we are doing but it’s a time to get a greater appreciation from the outside community.”
In the end, Ebony Harlem is about promoting Afrocentricity and excellence. Kinesha Harris said it best: “If we don’t support ourselves, who will support us?”el
Tiera George | Correspondent
With Pan-Afrikan week coming to a close, students, faculty, alumni, and parents gathered around as members of our National Pan-Hellenic Council graced the stage with some original stepping on Saturday, April 9 in the Talley Student Center Ballroom.
“The event delivered and surpassed my expectations, I was expecting for everyone just to step and that be the end of it, but the storylines, the host, the bridging of cultures, and the atmosphere made this somewhere I was really happy to be,” says Kendra Hairston, a sophomore majoring in accounting.
Comedian, actor, and one Kappa Alpha Psi’s very own, Deandre Corder, more commonly known as “Dukk” brought raw energy, enthusiasm, and plenty of jokes as he hosted the 46th Annual Pan-Afrikan Week step show.
From his jokes that highlighted the funniest stereotypes in Greek letter organizations to the intermission that had the crowd on their feet, Dukk managed to keep the audience engaged throughout the entirety of the show.
“We had Dukk host it, he’s a really cool guy. He was very professional, he was very funny and he knew what he was doing,” said Sharod Fenner, a senior studying Technology, Engineering and Design Education and a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Fenner served as the step master for the show.
First to the stage was the Kappa Lambda Chapter of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity Inc. Not only did they bring their best ties and slacks, but they brought backflips, athleticism and some phenomenal stepping.
Following the high energy performance of the Omega’s were the sisters of the Mu Xi Chapter of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. Bringing intensity and mystery as they traveled through the journey of becoming a Zeta woman, they reached their final door of womanhood after highlighting the keys of service, scholarship, sisterhood and fraternity embrace.
The lively ivies of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc. then stole the show with their Space Jam themed performance that sent the crowd wild as one of their own soared through the “sky” to find herself scoring the game winning shot that would ultimately lead them to a first place victory and a spot in everyone’s Snapchat story.
Last, but not least the crowd followed the rehabilitation of the men of the Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. as they searched for the real meaning behind their letters. Not only did they find their true purpose, but they also found a 1st place win in the Pan-Afrikan step show.
“It was very rewarding that we were able to win it. It was confirmation that hard work pays off,” said Fenner.
One of the judges, a man of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and an alumni of North Carolina State University 2015, Kelly Darden says “It was great to come back and see the lasting legacy of the Greek organizations, it was very apparent that there was lot of work put into the performance which in return contributed to the precision and the overall success of the event.”
The Pan-Afrikan Step Show was definitely one for the books, ending the week to end on a high note. With the embrace and celebration of black culture, it is safe to say that those who came out enjoyed themselves.
Nyna Nickelson | Correspondent
The 19th Annual Fashion Expose went big this year exceeding all the hopes and expectations of all who attended. The event is hostedd by The African American Textile Society.
The fashion show featured eighteen designers, half in the novice category and the other in the category of intermediate and beyond. The judges rated each design for construction, concept and runway presence.
This years theme: “Modern Model,” focused on simple and classic designs with a twist. The theme incorporated cohesive monochromatic details accompanied with a refreshing take that only a younger generation of thinkers and designers could give.
The 19th Annual Fashion Expose was set up in the Talley Ballroom with approximately 200 people in attendance. The Talley Ballroom added a sophisticated flare to an already fabulous production.
The novice duo of Kaitlin Schreiner and Lauren Rosenwinkel created the winning collection: Crash. Kaitlin Schreiner is majoring in fashion textile design with a concentration in textiles. Lauren Rosenwinkel is majoring in fashion textile design with a concentration in fashion design.
Schreiner, the designer of the textile prints, states “ they [the prints] were inspired by marble, ocean waves and shattered glass. That’s where the name “Crash” came from.
“I designed the silhouettes,” said Rosenwinkel, “and since we had kind of busier textile patterns we wanted to go with simple silhouette.” The collection focused on loose fits, deep v’s and cut-out shapes. The outfits combined cool grays and light pinks reminiscent of speckled granite.
After the competition the duo is concentrating on finishing out the semester strong and traveling during the summer.
In the intermediate and beyond category Jiayin Li took the win. Her collection included styles for both male and females. She incorporated graphic cartoon prints into modern pieces like jumpsuits and chinos.
“I am from China, so I am thinking about putting some variation of traditional elements into the modern styles,” says Li.
She comments that her patterns were very inspired by ancient Chinese books. Each of her designs featured an embroidered animal face.
“The animals on their backs are six of the twelve of animals found in the Chinese Zodiac,” says Li. Her models brought attitude and grace to an already well-conceived line.
Li is a senior, who will be graduating in the summer of 2016 and has plans to stay in the United States and search for a job.