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Release Date: 
Friday, October 15, 2021

The Excellence of the Black Woman conference 2021

Event Date: 
Thu, 11/11/2021 - 9:00am to 3:00pm
Fri, 11/12/2021 - 9:00am to 3:00pm
Virtual - Zoom
Dr. Kenja McCray
Dr. Kenja McCray will be the event's keynote speaker.

The Black Male and QUEENS Focus Group (BMQFG) will host the inaugural Excellence of the Black Woman Conference on November 11 and 12, 2021. This conference is part retention/college success, part informational, and all celebratory. The event will be held via Zoom.

"The most disrespected person in America is the black woman.
The most unprotected person in America is the black woman.
The most neglected person in America is the black woman." - Malcolm X, 1962

The BMQFG intentionally works to walk in excellence and dismantle narratives that challenge the collective greatness of our people. To this end, we (BMQFG) planned this conference to celebrate the Black woman and embrace the reality of her excellence as a model for all to follow.

Register for this free conference

You may register at any time. After you register, you will receive a link to the Zoom sessions.

Additional information:

Conference Sessions and Keynote: Thursday, Nov. 11, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. AND 5 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Knowledge: Opening Ceremony/Declaration of Sacred Space (9:00-9:08)

Dr. Kalvin DaRonne Harvell
Keeper of the Tradition/Coordinator of the BMQFG

Session A: Nia, 9:10 – 10:10

Session Presenter:
Dr. Jeffrey Lee
Immaculata University

Session Title: Excellence in Education: Hidden Figures in the Struggle for Equity in Education
Session Theme: Challenge to HIStory, exploring HERstory.

Session B: Kuumba, 10:20-11:20

Session Presenter:
Sister Alanna Grace-Marie Schwartz
Black Male & QUEENS Focus Group (BMQFG)
Artist & Aspiring Sociologist
Henry Ford College

Session Title: Black History all year long!
Session Theme: Celebrating Black History all year long!
Session Facilitator: Sister Venessa Newton (BMQFG – Henry Ford College)

Session C: Nia, 11:25 - 11:50

Session Presenter: Robert Yahrmatter
Associate Dean of the School of Liberal Arts (SOLA)
Henry Ford College

Session Title: Exploring Henry Ford College
Session Theme: Review of programs, partnerships, and transfer opportunities at Henry Ford College

Sankofa Keynote Address, 12:00 noon

Session Title: "Leadership Lessons: Takeaways from a Historical Look at Pan-African Nationalist Women's Activism and Advocacy"

Session Presenter: Dr. Kenja R. McCray (see bio below)

Session Facilitator: Sister Alanna Schwartz (BMQFG – Henry Ford College)

Session C: Umoja, 1:05 – 2:00

Session Presenter:
Sharon Reneé Burrell
History Department
Rochester College

Session Title:
Diane Nash: No Retreat, No Surrender
Session Theme: Activism & the Black Freedom Movement through the life of Diane Nash

Session Facilitator: Sister Venessa Newton (BMQFG – Henry Ford College)

Session D: Ujima, 2:00-3:00

Session Presenters:
Brenda Hildreth, PsyD, LPC (Henry Ford College)
Gwendolyn Pringle, PhD, LPC (Henry Ford College)

Session Title: Packing Your Toolbox with Techniques to Remove Anxiety and Depression in a Pandemic Session Theme: Mental Health, Navigating the Pandemic

Special Evening Session E: Umoja, 5:00 – 6:00

Session Presenter:
Dr. Mikala Evans Cochran
Eastern Michigan University

Session Title:
Afrocentric Community Organizing: A Study of Detroit Independent Freedom School Movement
Session Theme: Afrocentrism, Self Determination, Education

Keynote Speaker: Kenja R. McCray, Ph.D.

Kenja McCray is an Associate Professor of History who earned a Ph.D. from Georgia State University and a bachelor's degree from Spelman College.

Dr. McCray teaches and researches United States and African American history and culture, social justice movements, and women’s leadership. An award-winning author, she penned a chapter for the forthcoming Black Power in Florida edited volume and is currently working on a book manuscript exploring the service and leadership of women involved in the long Black freedom struggle from 1965 until 1987.

Conference Sessions: Friday, Nov. 12, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

Building Wisdom Welcome and Morning Greeting

Dr. Kalvin DaRonne Harvell
(Keeper of the Tradition/Coordinator of the BMQFG)

Session 1: Nia, 9:15-10:00

Randolph Bellamy, MBA
Associate Director of Office of Undergraduate Admissions & Student Services
Florida A & M University

Session Title: An Exploration of Florida A & M University
Session Theme: Informational session on Florida A & M University

Session 2: Umoja, 10:10-11:00

Presenter: Christopher Rutherford
Director of Community Mobilization Strategy
Michigan College Access Network

Presentation Title: Michigan’s Strategy for Equity in College Attainment and its impact on Black Women students
Session Theme: Equity in Education

Session Facilitator: Sister Venessa Newton (BMQFG – Henry Ford College)

Session 3: Imani 11:10- 12:00

Professor Courtney Henderson
English Department
School of Arts and Sciences (SOLA)
Henry Ford College

Presentation Title: Rest as Resistance: The importance of Self-Love in the pursuit of Black Excellence and Social Justice
Session Theme: Self-Love (Building)
Session Facilitator: Sister Alana Schwartz (BMQFG – Henry Ford College)

Session 4: Ujima, 12:10-1:00

Keirra R. Scott
Stephen M. Ross School of Business Master of Management Candidate
University of Michigan
(Former HFC Student)

Presentation Title: Understanding the Assignment
Session Theme: Academic Persistence

Session 5: Kujichagulia, 1:10 – 2:00

Kalvin DaRonne Harvell, PhD, Ed.S.
Keeper of the Tradition & Coordinator of the BMQFG
Sociology Department (SOLA)
Chair of the Black Male Retention and Success Conference
Chair of the Excellence of the Black Woman Conference
Henry Ford College

Presentation Title: Black Male & QUEENS Focus Group: Reflections on our Past, Planning for the Future!
Session Theme: Updates and Answering your questions about the BMQFG

Session 6: Ujima, 2:05-3:00

Johnnie Upshaw
Claremont Graduate University Master of Cultural Studies Candidate (Former HFC Student)

Presentation Title:
Unapologetic Black Speculative Futures
Session Theme: Black Success, Self Determination