On Tuesday, June 3, 2014, the 2014 Los Angeles Community Colleges District Black Graduation Celebration took place at Cougar Field at Los Angeles Southwest College (LASC). This year’s theme was “A Cultural Celebration of Academic Achievement.”
This year’s committee was co-chaired by Dr. Tangelia Alfred and Chauncine Stewart. All nine of the Los Angeles Community College District (LACCD) campuses were represented. Los Angeles Southwest’s interim president, Dr. Yasmin Delahoussaye and LACCD interim chancellor, Dr. Adriana Barrera, welcomed the audience.
The celebration began with the Dembrehrah West African Drum Ensemble leading the processional to Cougar Field. Rhodesia Jackson, an LASC student, gave the libation. Linda Cole, chaplain of the Los Angeles Community College District Black Faculty and Staff Association (LACCD BFSA) gave the opening prayer. Actress, performer, director, writer and activist, T’Keyah Crystal Keymah from In Living Color and That’s So Raven, led the Negro National Anthem.
Dr. Lawrence Bradford, LASC Vice President of Academic Affairs, spoke about the purpose of the Black Graduation Celebration. There were words from LACCD Trustee, Mike Eng and ASO president and future LACCD student trustee, LaMont Jackson. Dr. Ayesha Randall from Los Angeles Trade-Technical College introduced the keynote speaker, Dr. Corliss Bennett-McBride, the director of the Center for Black Cultural and Student Affairs at University of Southern California, who gave a spirited talk encouraging graduates to prepare for the next chapter of their lives.
Helen Young, Transfer Center Director of West Los Angeles College gave the college and university roll call where students were recognized for their subsequent college plans. Thomas Dawkins, president of the Los Angeles Community College District Black Faculty & Staff Association presented members of the LACCD BFSA.
As graduates were called, they were congratulated by LACCD administrators Sonya Lopez, East Los Angeles College; Abbie Patterson, Vice President of Student Services, Harbor College; Dr. John Al-Amin, Vice President of Academic Affairs Los Angeles City College; Monte Perez, Vice President, Los Angeles Mission College; Dr. Kaneesha Tarrant, Vice President, Los Angeles Trade Technical College; Dr. Bobbi McDaniel, Los Angeles Valley College; Mr. Earic Peters, Vice President, Pierce College; Dr. Lawrence Bradford, Vice President Southwest College; and Ms. Phyllis Braxton, Interim Vice President, West Los Angeles College.
The Los Angeles Community College District Black Faculty and Staff Association gave $2,500 to deserving graduates. Dr. Ayesha Randall, LACCD BFSA vice president, Paulette Bailey, LACCD BFSA secretary, and Garnet King, LACCD BFSA member and staff representative selected the names of ten graduates to receive a cash gift of $250 each.
The LACCD Black Graduation Celebration Committee is a subcommittee of the African American Outreach Initiative (AAOI). 2014 LACCD Black Graduation Celebration Committee: Chauncine Stewart, LASC – Co Chair; Tangelia Alfred, LASC –Co Chair; Shauna Carter, LASC Deborah Campbell, LATTC; Charles Sandifer , LASC; Joni Collins, LASC; Ralph Davis, LASC; Krystle Evans, LASC; Murrell Green, WLAC; Blanchie Hollier, LASC; LaMont Jackson, LASC; Walter Jones, WLAC; Laura Manyweather, LASC; Rhodesia Jackson, LASC; and Michelle Williams, LASC.
Photos from the celebration can be viewed here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/lasouthwestcollege/sets/72157645061794293/.