Black Alumnae/i Symposium

The Power of our Presence: Celebrating the Greatness Within Us

More than 150 alumnae/i, faculty, staff, and students were on campus to attend the 2018 Black Alumnae/i Symposium April 27-29. Entitled The Power of Our Presence: Celebrating the Greatness Within Us, participants enjoyed a weekend of celebration, inspiration, and the power of giving back.

Lead by the African American Alumnae/i Association and supported by the Office of Alumnae/i Engagement, the program featured rich, alumnae/i-driven programs including workshops, panels, and receptions.

Program Highlights

  • Updates from Simmons with Provost Katie Conboy
  • Julieanna Richardson, founder and executive director of The HistoryMakers, reflected on the contributions of Dr. Dorothy Ferebee ’20, Gwen Ifill ’77, ‘93HD, and interviewed Ambassador Harriet Elam-Thomas ’63, ‘00HD.
  • Leading healthcare professionals and experts, LaDonna Christian ’12HSC, ’16HSD, P’12 (Moderator), Millicent Gorham ’76, ’11HD, Cheryl Holder, MD, and Ngina Lythcott ’67, ’04HD, led a panel on current healthcare inequities, particularly those affecting black communities, and the innovative ways those issues are being addressed.
  • A keynote speech by CNN political commentator Symone D. Sanders, the youngest press secretary for a presidential candidate on record.
  • A civic engagement panel featuring, Fmr. Amb. Harriet Elam-Thomas, Hon. Pamela Moran Dashiell ’75, Associate Justice of the Boston Municipal Court, Carol Waller Pope ’74, former member of the Federal Labor Relations Authority, and Desiraé Simmons ’05, ’06GS, a community engagement professional at the University of Michigan.
  • Saturday’s Evening Affair with remarks from Deborah C. Brittain ’74SW, TS (some dancing too!)
  • Gospel Brunch with beautiful singing by Bryanna Brown ’19, a moving Awards Ceremony, and a powerful presentation by the students from Women of the Dream of the poem Still I Rise by Maya Angelou

Alumnae/i Award Winners

Congratulations to our Black Alumnae/i Symposium award winners!