Symposium aims to educate and empower African-American students

By Chip Washington - bio | email

SOUTHAVEN, MS (WMC-TV) - An upcoming symposium in DeSoto County will help young people remember the past while preparing for the future. Saturday, Brown Baptist Church in Southaven will host the first African American History Symposium and Celebration.

Organizer Mike Smith said the meeting is designed to both educate and empower young people.

"This Symposium is about empowering young people, educating them, and hopefully they can go out and embody and embrace that spirit of knowing who they are and understand the importance of African-Americans," Smith said Friday.

The event is geared specifically towards young people in grades 8 through 12.  Besides visual displays, it will also feature several workshops including topics on managing finances, nutrition, legal rights and college preparation.

Brown Baptist Associate Minister Anthony Self said local churches have a role and a responsibility to encourage and support young people.

"We just want to make sure they understand it really doesn't matter where you come from as long as you know what's prompting you - motivating you - and you understand if you keep your eyes on the goal, you'll reach it," Self said.

Smith knows where the responsibility starts.

"We as citizens of this great city and county need to do our part because we want this generation to be better than the generation we are in today," he said.

The event begins at 9:00 a.m. and goes until 3:30 p.m. Admission is $3.00 for students and $5.00 for adults.

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