Renowned education pioneer highlights university's Black History Month observance
Monday, Feb. 2, 2015
MANHATTAN — International education advocate and change agent Geoffrey Canada will be Kansas State University's keynote speaker for Black History Month.
Canada's lecture, "Leveling the Playing Field," will take place at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 9, in the Grand Ballroom at the K-State Student Union. The university's Black Student Union and Student Governing Association are co-sponsoring the lecture, which is free and open to the public.
Canada, a Harvard University graduate, is a product of a poor neighborhood in the South Bronx. After graduating, Canada began his life's work helping children with backgrounds like his through the Harlem Children's Zone. Starting from a focus on a single block, the Harlem Children's Zone has grown to more than 100 square blocks and serves 10,000 children by providing prekindergarten care, after-school programs, health care, college planning and classes for soon-to-be-parents to break the cycle of poverty.
Both Canada and the Harlem Children's Zone were part of the 2010 documentary "Waiting for Superman." Canada's leadership with the organization inspired President Barack Obama's Promise Neighborhoods program, offering grants to programs in 21 cities across the country to try and emulate the success of the Harlem Children's Zone.
"Geoffrey Canada is someone who advocates for education to be equal in all communities," said Justice Davis, junior in marketing and K-State Black Student Union president. "In light of what's relevant in today's society, bringing in speakers like Geoffrey Canada will expand cultural knowledge and racial consciousness on campus."
Canada's work is nationally recognized. He has appeared on "Oprah" and he was named one of America's best leaders by U.S. News & World Report in 2005. In 2011, he was listed as one of Time magazine's 100 most influential people in the world.
For a listing of Kansas State University's Black History Month events, visit https://ksusankofa.wordpress.com/bhm/.