A group of seven graduate students and one faculty member from WKU’s Department of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport (KRS) attended the 26th annual Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference (SBSLC) Jan. 16-19 at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas.
This year’s conference was designed to create a forum in which student leaders are able to develop personally and professionally through superior programming and intellectual discourse. The WKU group participated in leadership, educational, professional and cultural workshops.
“It is my great pleasure to welcome African-American students to one of the largest and most prestigious student-run collegiate leadership events in the nation,” Conference Chair Natalie Dunn said. “SBSLC has been dedicated to empowering student leaders to excel academically and become productive leaders and citizens in their communities for more than 25 years. It is our hope that this four-day conference inspires participants to strive for professional, personal and academic growth as leaders.”
Brittany Prather of Henderson, a graduate student in the Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration (RSA), found the conference to be interactive and an excellent networking opportunity. “The whole conference was leadership based and helped attendees to not only build upon their existing skills, but it also pushed us outside of our comfort zones,” Prather said.
WKU students also promoted the Master of Science in Recreation and Sport Administration by sponsoring a booth at the conference career and vendor fair. “I am so proud that our graduate students and faculty are willing to market the RSA program to future generations of WKU students,” said Dr. Fred Gibson, Director of Graduate Programs in the Department of Kinesiology, Recreation and Sport. “They are recruiting outstanding students from across the country with their testimonials about the WKU experience.”
Dr. Evie Oregon, faculty advisor for the conference trip, noted that the “entire experience was a great opportunity for our graduate students to enhance their leadership skills, to promote the RSA program and recruit future minority students. They represented WKU well.”
WKU students who attended the conference were: Teranie Thomas of Dallas, Texas; Brittany Prather of Henderson; Shirrita Newton and Jared Clendinin, both of Atlanta, Ga.; Desmond Davidson and Andre Farrell, both of Louisville; and Jamal Forrest of Miami, Fla.
Travel costs and conference registration fees were covered for each WKU student through funding by the KRS Department and the Graduate School.
About the SBSLC: The mission of the Southwestern Black Student Leadership Conference is to present the importance of combining knowledge with family, religion, culture, and community to be used as tools to become productive members of society is our mission as “Today’s Black Leaders: Our Hope for Tomorrow.” As members of the African American Community, we must use our strength and pride to take the initiative to educate our youth and to help them to focus on their futures. It is not for us to wait until tomorrow to rescue our young people from the dangers surrounding us; the time is now. The conference encompasses history, leadership and networking skills, and self-improvement techniques. In addition, the conference values clarification and uses corporate America to inspire and motivate the intellect of young Black collegians to be productive leaders of tomorrow. For information on the conference please visit http://sbslc.tamu.edu/.
Contact: Dr. Evie Oregon, (270) 745-2080 or firstname.lastname@example.org.