All Star Code Raises Over $1 Million To Expand STEM Summer Program For Boys Of Color

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Young black men in the areas of New York City and Pittsburgh will have the opportunity to learn about web development and entrepreneurship in the fifth annual “Summer Intensive” STEM Summer program hosted by All Star Code (ASC).

It was recently announced that the program raised $1 million to fund their mission. ASC was created to educate, prepare, and place young men of color in the tech industry. According to Christina Lewis, who founded ASC in 2013, the organization is on track to educate a total of 10,000 young black and Latino men in tech and entrepreneurship by 2022.

“All Star Code’s impact continues to spread as we establish a pipeline of talented and ambitious young entrepreneurs who are ready to enter the tech industry,” said Lewis in a statement. “Tech is one of the most influential and lucrative industries, so it’s vital that Black and Latino young men are better represented in this space to capture its economic opportunity.”

Summer Intensive consist of a free six-week course that teaches students web development skills and about entrepreneurship. It also empowers students with soft skills and a network of like-minded peers.

The effectiveness of All Star Code’s curriculum is amplified by corporate partners like AT&T, Cisco, Goldman Sachs, Google, JPMorgan Chase, MLB, and Medidata, as well as the academic institutions Chatham University and the University of Pittsburgh School of Education, which provide operational and financial support and services. Through these partnerships, students will gain access to mentorships, speakers, and professional work culture.

ASC has received a record number of applicants—nearly 1,000 for just 160 spots. Find out more about this innovative summer program by visiting www.allstarcode.org.

Kimora Lee Simmons Earns College Degree At Same Time Daughter Graduates High School

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It’s never too late to further your education and no matter how old you are, it is still a major accomplishment!

Kimora Lee Simmons recently celebrated earning her college degree from the University of Hartford in Connecticut. The 43-year-old former model and fashion designer attained her degree in Bachelor of Arts in Business and Entrepreneurial Affairs at the same time her oldest daughter, Ming Lee Simmons, graduated high school.

Kimora credits both of her daughters, Ming and Aoki, for helping her through some of her most challenging moments.

“My daughters would help me format my papers. They helped me with the formatting and laying it out,” she told Us Weekly. “I’ve had pure breakdowns on my Instagram Lives. They’ve helped me overcome that, and as a parent, I’m there to encourage them, to help push them and being there for when they stumble. I want that to be the message that in the last few months, I’ve dealt with school bullies, long nights, writing papers and everything else in our lives. I was doing this for me though. I was doing it for myself and it feels good.”

Kimora says going back to school had nothing to do with her business. In fact, she taught business and entrepreneurship classes while completing online courses. “The students in my class were so diverse, people from graphic design, business, music, fashion and teaching them helped me see my reach and influence,” she explained. “I think that’s the true measure of success is how many people’s lives you touch and how many people you can impact and I’m proud of how many people I’ve influenced and how I could change lives in that way.”

Graduations can be one of those “happy-tears” moments and for Kimora, it was no different. “I didn’t know it was going to be as emotional as it was, but it was, and I was nervous! … It’s never too late to go back to school and get your degree,” she said. “My cap and gown was the best gown I’ve ever worn. And my favorite accessory to go with it, my National Honors Society tassel!”

As for how 18-year-old Ming Lee felt sharing the spotlight with her mother, Kimora admits, “Well, Ming Lee says I stole her light. She’s upset to have to share it with me, but it’s a great example of setting an example for yourself and your kids. When they say you’re never too old to go back, it’s true. No matter what situation you’re in, it’s possible.”

Kimora Lee Simmons is a mother of 4, who believes in continued education and credits motherhood as being one of the reasons graduating college has been a fulfilling journey. “I did this for myself and I did it for my kids. I believe in continued education and I think there are a lot of different ways you can go about it … I think it taking 20 years and having four kids made it even more fulfilling to me,” she noted. “Even though finishing up my classes was grueling at times, it makes me feel so good to have done it,” she said.

Congratulations to both Kimora and Ming!

Serena Williams Says Domestic Violence Abuse Education Should Be Taught To Young Boys

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According to the Associated Press, Serena Williams says that men should be more included in conversations about ending domestic violence abuse. The new mother believes that the conversation should surrounding domestic abuse education should start when boys are young. Do you guys agree?

“I think expanding the conversation to men and expanding the conversation to young boys, it’s so important,” Williams said on Wednesday. “This is a human rights issue. We should all be treated the same. We should be treated equal. With domestic abuse, it doesn’t care what color you are, what background you’re from.”

Williams is actively doing the work to stop domestic abuse. She currently serves as an ambassador for the Allstate Foundation Purple Purse initiative which helps put an end to domestic violence by starting the conversation with the new generation of kids.

Being a mother has made this issue even more prevalent and relatable to her and she plans to continue being an advocate for domestic abuse education.

 

Five Types Of Yoga That Anyone Can Master

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Have you ever wanted to try yoga but you aren’t sure of what kind of yoga practice is right for you? Well in honor of #National Yoga Day, we are breaking down all the types of yoga classes you can attend from physical, to mental, or spiritual, here are five types of yoga practices that anyone can master.

 

 

Acro Yoga: AcroYoga blends the wisdom of yoga, the dynamic power of acrobatics, and the loving kindness of healing arts. These three form the foundation of a practice that cultivates trust, playfulness, and community. This is my personal favorite type of yoga style, although it can be intense, it is worth it. Acro yoga strengthens your core, balance skills, and upper body strength. I would highly recommend eating before practicing this type of yoga style because you will exude a lot of energy.

 

 

Hot Yoga: Just like the name, hot yoga is hot. During hot yoga you are doing a combination of yoga poses in a 105-degree room for 90 minutes. The benefits of Hot Yoga include flexibility and less warm-up time. While hot yoga has become a popular trend, it is important to take some safety measures, drink lots of water to stay dehydrated because extreme cases, it can lead to heat exhaustion and heat stroke.

 

 

 

Hatha Yoga: Hatha derives from the Sanskrit term ” This physical-based yoga is the most popular and has numerous styles. Hatha yoga classes are best for beginners since they are usually paced slower than other yoga styles. Hatha classes today are a classic approach to breathing and exercises. If you are brand-new to yoga, hatha yoga is a great entry point to the practice.

 

 

 

Kundalini Yoga: Do you feel like your life is slightly unbalanced and you want to get centered? If so, Kundalini you is for you! This type of yoga focuses on your spirituality and physical being. During this yoga practice you releases the energy in your body said to be trapped in the lower spine. These classes really work your core and breathing with fast moving. These classes also can involve chanting, mantra, and meditation.

 

 

 

 

Iyengar Yoga: Iyengar yoga focuses on alignment as well as detailed and precise movements. During this class, you will be taken through a series of postures while practicing breath control. Generally, poses are held for a long time while adjusting the minutiae of the pose. Iyengar relies heavily on props to help students perfect their form and go deeper into poses in a safe manner This style is really great for people with injuries who need to work slowly and methodically.

 

Which  yoga classes will you be attending?

What You Need To Know About Juneteenth

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July 4th represents the Declaration Of Independence and the birth of the United States, but there is also another day that represents freedom for African Americans that is often forgotten. That day is June 19th, also known as Juneteenth. On this day we celebrate the abolition of slavery in Texas and other Confederate states.

Unfortunately, a lot of people did not learn much about this life-changing day of freedom in social studies class. What is Juneteenth? Who Freed the slaves? How do we celebrate it properly? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered. Here is everything you should know about Juneteenth:

What is Juneteenth?

Juneteenth or June 19, 1865, is considered the date when the last slaves in America were freed. On that day General Gordon Granger arrived in Galveston with the news that the Emancipation Proclamation had freed slaves. Freed Texan slaves began an annual celebration of June 19 on the first anniversary of the day, and the holiday eventually began to be known as Juneteenth.

Did Abraham Lincoln free the slaves?

Yes, Abraham Lincoln did play a huge part in the slaves being freed. On September 2, 1962, Abraham Lincoln issued the Emancipation Proclamation declaring that as of January 1, 1963, all slaves in the Confederate states will be freed. The Proclamation freed 3.1 million slaves. However, this did not apply to apply to those slave-holding states that did not rebel against the Union. As a result, about 8000,000 slaves were unaffected by the provisions of the proclamation. In the end, it took a civil war to enforce the Emancipation Proclamation and the 13th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution to formally outlaw slavery in the United States.

Ways To celebrate Juneteenth?

There are many ways to celebrate Juneteenth. Some people have cookouts in the park, some organize local skits and others throw parades. If all else fails, you can take a trip to your local library to read some books about slavery.

Why We Celebrate Juneteenth?

Juneteenth represents the end of slavery. It serves as a reminder of the disfranchisement and inhumane treatment black people have had to suffer through in order to have the same rights and privileges that White Americans were given at birth.

Richmond, Virginia’s J.E.B. Stuart Elementary To Be Renamed After President Barack Obama

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An elementary school in my hometown of Richmond, Virginia will be renamed from a Confederate general to the first black president of the United States!

The Richmond Public School board voted Monday night to officially change the name of J.E.B. Stuart Elementary to Barack Obama Elementary. As a former student of J.E.B. Stuart Elementary, I am extremely proud of the measures taken to change the name of the school to an influential figure that my community and my city can be proud of, especially a school like Stuart where about 95% of the student body is African American.

The new name was chosen from a total of seven finalists. The vote was six-to-one. Against naming the school after President Barack Obama was Kenya Gibson, who was in favor of renaming Stuart after a more local figure. She told Richmond Times-Dispatch that Richmond is “about history and we have so many great local stories to tell. Our local stories are so important to cherish.”

According to Teen Vogue, Richmond is not the first school board to vote in favor of renaming a school after our former president. Last year, a Mississippi school board voted to change an elementary school’s name from Jefferson Davis (the president of the Confederacy) to instead honor Barack Obama.

Other options considered by the Richmond Public School board included Oliver Hill Elementary (named after a local civil rights attorney) and Henry Marsh Elementary (named after Richmond’s first black mayor).

The Los Angeles Film School Gives 1.5 Million Towards The Women In Entertainment Scholarship Fund Initiative

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The entertainment world has always been known as a male dominated industry, but things are changing. In an effort to help more women gain opportunities in the entertainment industry, The Los Angeles Film School has given 1.5 million towards the Women In Entertainment Scholarship Fund Initiative. According to Deadline, the long-term goal to create parity in female enrollment in the film school and its subsidiary The Los Angeles Recording School. The WIES fund will benefit incoming female students and is part of the Los Angeles Film School’s latest pledge to increase female enrollment to 50 percent of the overall student body. The scholarship program will start immediately, and will provide a one-time $2,000 award towards tuition for all newly enrolled female students. The scholarship can be applied towards and of LAFS’s degree programs, including Bachelor and Associate of Science degrees in Entertainment Business, Animation, Graphic Design, Music Production, Audio Production and Film.

“We realize we can do better and are proud to commit ourselves to affording a higher educational opportunity that charts a course to even out the starting gates for women,” says David Phillips, LAFS Special Advisor.

The Women In Entertainment scholarship also supports recent industry wide efforts to increase gender parity for women across the professional landscape. The scholarship programs will also aim to help level the professional playing field and develop a pipeline of well qualified and ambitious women leaders who will innovate across the entertainment industry for years to come.

More Students Are Deciding To Attend HBCU’s For The 2018-2019 School Year

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The graduation hype is settling and the 2018-2019 academic year is on its way. Students are making their big decision on which college they are going to attend and it’s looking like more of them are turning to historically black college, especially in the metro area of Atlanta.

Last year, Clark Atlanta said it saw nearly 18,000 applications with only 8,075 admitted and 914 enrolled. Spelman saw more than 9,100 students apply for the upcoming school year which was a 9 percent increase from the previous year. Morehouse College saw their number of application rise by 40 percent.

Outside of the numbers advisors saw through essays written for admission that students desired to attend HBSU’s because of the political and social issues involved race. From police brutality to racial profiling on campuses with a majority of white students.

“I think that with the political climate today, students are interested in being in an environment where they understand that they’re nurtured, appreciated, and that they’re in an environment where they won’t be marginalized,” Darryl Isom the Morehouse Director of Admissions and Recruitment said.

Warren Hawkins III who is a proud student at Clark Atlanta University told 11Alive.com said that those are the main reasons why he decided to attend an HBCU along with the extra push from his mother.

“If I’m surrounded by those who look like me, who are succeeding, who are doing great things, where I’m drowned in black excellence then she knew that the best would come out of me,” Hawkins said.

We love to see this black magic happen and want to wish all of the graduate’s luck in their future educational endeavors.

“If I’m surrounded by those who look like me, who are succeeding, who are doing great things, where I’m drowned in black excellence then she knew that the best would come out of me,” Hawkins said.

We love to see this black magic happen and want to wish all of the graduates luck on their future educational endevours.

Sephora Launches “Bold Beauty For The Transgender Community”

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Everyone deserves to feel beautiful. That is why Sephora has announced a new program that focuses on creating a safe space and building confidence for transgender clients. Launching in June which is also LGBTQA pride month, the “Bold Beauty for the Transgender Community is a free 90 minute beauty workshop for created especially for transgender or non-binary people to learn about techniques and products to fit and empower their beauty. finish. Trans-sensitive instructors will teach all sessions.

According to the company’s press release the “Bold Beauty For The Transgender Community classes will feature Personalized skincare advice tailored to their needs, application techniques for creating smooth texture and color-correcting areas of concern, complexion tips and assistance in finding their best shade of foundation, using Sephora’s Color iQ system, a one-of-a-kind technology that scans the surface of skin and assigns it a Color iQ number for scientifically-precise product recommendations

“Sephora Stands is dedicated to supporting diversity and inclusion in all of its social impact programming. We stand with all members of the LGBTQA community and are committed to providing these individuals with the tools they want to feel confident and beautiful every single day,” said Corrie Conrad, Head of Social Impact and Sustainability for Sephora. “At Sephora, we believe beauty is yours to define, and ours to celebrate. We are honored to be a beacon of support and a part of each beauty journey through our new class offering.”

“Bold Beauty for the Transgender Community” classes will be available throughout the country in participating stores, and all friends, families and allies are welcome to join. For those unable to attend a class, Sephora Stands’ YouTube channel will offer several how-to video tutorials, led by Transgender Sephora Beauty Advisors, to serve as additional resources for LGBTQA community members.

“Bold Beauty For The Transgender Community” is apart of Sephora’s Stands Classes For Confidence program. You can sign up for the beauty class through Sephora’s website and through LGBTQA organizations.

Queen Latifah & Strayer University Team Up For New Course That Helps Students Build Confidence

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Strayer University will soon offer a course dedicated to building the confidence and perseverance of the student body and they’ve enlisted the help of musician and award-winning actress Queen Latifah.

Queen Latifah, whose real name is Dana Owens, is teaming up with Strayer to provide students with an 11-week online course that helps to build the confidence needed to succeed in the real world. She will be featured in inspirational, educational, and motivational videos and students will also receive personal live Q&A sessions from Queen Latifah for their individual needs. How amazing is that?

“I’m thrilled to partner with Strayer University to help their students succeed,” she says. “Strayer has been helping busy working adults go back to school for over 125 years and I’m honored to add to that legacy and support the students who are working so hard to further their careers.”

The President of Strayer University, Brian Jones provides an explanation as to why collaborating with Queen Latifah was the right choice, saying “Queen Latifah embodies many of the qualities we work to instill in our students to help them be successful in college and their careers including confidence, an entrepreneurial spirit, and persistence. We’re absolutely thrilled to have her join Strayer on our mission to help adult students succeed.”

Earlier this month, Latifah received an honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degree at the Rutgers University − Newark Commencement Ceremony. She will also be Strayer University’s commencement speaker on June 23, according to Vibe.

Meet Three 2018 College Graduates Reminding Young Women of Color To Always Reach For The Stars

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During a recent trip to New York City to attend the 2018 University Commencement ceremony for The New School, I was met with a very profound and enlightening revelation. As a young girl and even as a young child in general, I would encounter teachers, family members, and strangers on occasion who would remind me that I could do and be anything in this world I wanted to. Although I did believe that to be true, as I got older I also realized that as a young black woman, that would require me to work twice as hard to be considered just as good and it wouldn’t be easy.

I found it difficult to fight back the tears as my younger sister was called on stage to accept the David S. Woods award for humanitarianism at Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts’ recognition ceremony just a day earlier. After spending her freshman year in Ecuador as part of the non-profit organization, Global Citizen Year, having to complete a senior thesis that took 9 months of research, and everything that she’s accomplished in between, I felt like I was finally watching the stars align for her during these graduation ceremonies. And with every young black woman that accepted her college degree that day, I felt as though I was watching the stars align for them as well.

As a way to say congratulations, I wanted to shine a light on a few recent college graduates and remind the younger generations of women to come that you absolutely can do and be anything in this world that you want to. Yes, it will be difficult — no, the road won’t be easy, but I promise it is not impossible.

Congratulations to the entire class of 2018!

Cierra Bland

Graduating from Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts with a major in Global Studies, Cierra Bland was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia and spent her first year of college in Ecuador working on an organic farm and a shelter for victims of domestic violence. She has worked at the Schomburg Center For Research In Black Culture, volunteered as an ESL teacher, and interned at HarperCollins Publishers. As a member of the New School community, Cierra was a TA for Scene Study: Prison Plays, met with activists in Colombia as a Gural Scholar, organized a KnowYourRights campaign, and helped found the Black Student Union. Cierra Bland is a womanist who believes in storytelling as restorative justice.

Elesha Cole

Elesha Cole was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia and is a recent graduate of Valdosta State University, with a major in Chemistry and a minor in African American Studies. Throughout her college career, Elesha joined many great organizations such as NAACP, MAG: Media Art Geniuses, The Beauty Movement, and the Pre-Pharmacy Club. Not only was she able to uphold jobs in the retail and customer care industries while attending college, but Cole also managed to get her Pharmacy Technician license on top of creating, building, and growing her businesses, Ace of Gold Shoetique LLC and Gold Links Collection!

Tamia Mallory

Tamia Mallory was born and raised in Richmond, Virginia and is a recent graduate of George Mason University with a B.A. in Communication, a minor in Journalism, with a concentration in Media Production and Criticism. She has co-hosted The Spill, a talk show about campus life at GMU, and became Editor-In-Chief of Prime + Set. However, it doesn’t stop there for Tamia as she has a recently published article on Refinery29.com on being an aspiring black woman in media!

Seven Women Who Received Honorary Degrees

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Grad season is here. You have finally reached the end of the road to the most stressful but best time in your life. You can now rejoice because you are official done with school, but now what? If the transition into the “real world” isn’t what you expected, here are seven women whose stories will grant you all the #blackgirlmagic you need to push forward and kick ass in your field!

 

Aretha Franklin: The “Queen of Soul” obtained an honorary doctor of arts degree from Harvard University in 2014. While she did give the commencement speech, Franklin gave an amazing rendition of the national anthem Alicia Keys style. (only piano.)

 

Kerry Washington: Before she was cast as Olivia Pope, Washington was cast as a frog in the musical “Croak, or The Last Frog” on the campus of George Washington University where she earned her a Bachelor of Arts in 1998. In 2013, 15 years later The “Scandal” actress served as the commencement speaker and was awarded an honorary doctor of fine arts degree.

 

 

Oprah Winfrey: In 2011, Tennessee State University alumni Oprah Winfrey received an honorary doctorate from the University of the Free State in South Africa. She was awarded the degree for her commitment to education in Africa.

 

Global media leader, philanthropist, producer and actress Oprah Winfrey shows off her honorary degree May 21, 2017 during the 139th commencement ceremony at Smith College Quadrangle in Northampton.

 

Maya Angelou: Maya Angelou has several honorary awards. In 2001 the poet was presented with the Doctor Of Letters from Hope College where she spoke at the commencement ceremony.

Maya Angelou Receives Honorary Doctorate from Shenandoah University. (PRNewsFoto/Shenandoah University, Matthew Lofton)

 

Michelle Obama: Our “Forever First Lady” has received several honorary degrees but in 2012, Michelle Obama was awarded a public health doctorate degree for her work in promoting a healthier and nutritious way of living, and encouraging activities to cut down on childhood obesity from Oregon State University.

 

First Lady Michelle Obama holds up her diploma after receiving an honorary degree during the Oregon State University graduation ceremony in Corvallis, Ore., Sunday June 17, 2012. The First Lady gave the commencement address at Oregon State University, the school where her brother is the head basketball coach. (AP Photo/Don Ryan)

Jill Scott: In 2016 Grammy Award winning singer Jill Scott received the honor of Doctor of Humane Letters from her alma matter, Temple University. The President of Temple University said that Scott “values and achievements embody the mission and ideas of the university.”

 

Patti LaBelle: Our favorite diva Patti Labelle also received a doctorate degree in the honor of Doctor of Humane Letters from Temple University in 2010. Although she did not attend the college, LaBelle partnered with the university to raise awareness about diabetes.

Congrats to all of the graduates!