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As we prepare for our commencement next week, with our great guest Janelle Monae, I am reminded of all the great visitors we host EVERY year at Dillard University. While what takes place in the classroom is important, out of class learning experiences can be just as important for overall student learning. Years ago when Bill Maxwell of the St. Petersburg Times spoke for our faculty-staff institute at Philander Smith College, he really emphasized the need for HBCU students, especially those who might not have the same exposure as other students, to be exposed to a range of ideas and people to provide texture for their learning.

So meet some of our guests that provided texture this academic year.

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Lee Mazin & Audra the Rapper, Hip Hop artists (VH1’s “Sisterhood of Hip Hop”)
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Brandan “BMike” Odums
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Therese Badon, UNCF Vice President
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Chef Kevin Mitchell, Culinary Institute of Charleston (SC)
Chef Pierre Thiam (left), King of New African Cuisine
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Dr. Christopher Emdin, Columbia University; author “For White Folks Who Teach In the Hood”
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Dr. Dawn-Elissa Fischer, San Francisco State University
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Derrick Edwards, New Orleans attorney
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Dr. LaKisha Simmons, University of Michigan; author “Crescent City Girls”
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Melanie Campbell, Black Women’s Roundtable
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Ann Duplessis, Liberty Bank
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Demetria McKinney, actress & singer
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Stevie Baggs, Jr., speaker & former NFL player
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Father Michael Pfleger, St. Sabina (Chicago)
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Derek “Fonzworth Bentley” Watkins, musician & author
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Bishop Lamont, Hip Hop artist
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Lynn Richardson, President, Hip Hop Sisters Foundation
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MC Lyte
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Michel’le, recording artist
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Rich Lowry, editor, The National Review
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Roland Martin, journalist
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Shanti Das, The Hip Hop Professional
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Dr. Terrell Strayhorn, higher education scholar
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Dr. Tim Renick, Vice President for Enrollment Management, Georgia State University
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Toya Wright, entrepreneur and author, “In My Own Words”
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Atty Chris Stewart, Alton Sterling family attorney
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State Senator Wesley Bishop
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Sybrina Fulton & Tracy Martin, authors, “Rest In Power”

Stay tuned for guests that will visit during the 2017–18 academic year. As always, we love to have the community come visit and participate.

The Prez

Written by

7th president of Dillard University

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