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B-CU to Host Black Male Empowerment Summit April 30-May 2

President Jackson and studentsBethune-Cookman University will bring nationally renowned speakers to the campus for a Black Male Empowerment Summit from April 30 to May 2. The summit, “Elevating the Man, While Supressing the Hood,” is free and open to the public.

The purpose of the summit is to empower males by offering positive images, celebrating accomplishments, and discussing pertinent issues that affect the growth and imaging of black males in our communities, said B-CU President Dr. Edison O. Jackson. 

“B-CU will be a place where men can come to receive an education that will prepare them to be leaders in this generation and the next” Jackson said. “We want to be a beacon of light that highlights the positive attributes of our young men so that we can dispel the stereotypes that keep dreams from becoming reality.”

Dr. Marvin Sapp, international gospel artist and Pastor of Lighthouse Full Life Center Church, will kick off the summit as keynote speaker on the opening night, Wednesday, April 30, 7 p.m. Sapp will discuss the role that faith plays in developing manhood. The event will be held in the Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center.

On Thursday, May 1, Jackson will host the “Bowtie & Socks Prayer Breakfast,” at 9 a.m. The event will be held in the university courtyard behind Heyn  Memorial Chapel. In addition, there will be a resource fair on the quad from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Also on Thursday, the university will host a panel discussion entitled “The Conversation: State of the Black Male,” at 5 p.m. in the Center for Civic Engagement’s President’s Banquet Hall. Panelists include Tracy Martin, the father of slain teen Trayvon Martin; Ron Davis, father of slain teen Jordan Davis; and Retired Judge Hubert Grimes.

On Thursday evening at 7 p.m., Dr. Lonise Bias, the mother of the late Len Bias, will give a talk entitled “Hope is Not Extinct.” The discussion will be held in Heyn Memorial Chapel.

Grammy-winning gospel artist and pastor Rev. Donnie McClurkin will close the summit at 7 p.m. Friday with a discussion on the future of the black male.  This event will take place at the Mary McLeod Bethune Performing Arts Center.


Bethune-Cookman University was founded in 1904 and serves the community via three campuses in Daytona Beach, Deltona and Hastings. For more information, visit

Institutional Advancement

Beverly James
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About Bethune Cookman University:

Founded in 1904 by Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune, Bethune-Cookman University (B-CU) today sustains her legacy of faith, scholarship and service through its relationship with the United Methodist Church and its commitment to academic excellence and civic engagement.  B-CU offers 38 degrees on its main campus and online college. Located in Daytona Beach, B-CU is one of three private, historically black colleges in the state of Florida. The institution boasts a diverse and international faculty and student body of nearly 4,000.  For more information, visit

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