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Teen Docents from Ogden Museum Take an Art Tour Dillard University PDF Print E-mail
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Teen Docents from the Ogden Museum of Southern Art visited Dillard University to view and talk about Univeristy's art collection.  Photos by Trent Thomas/ Teen Docent 


By  L. Kasimu Harris
Assistant Director
University Communications & Marketing


While some high school students use the summer as a respite from their formal education, the learning is continuous for teen docents from the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. Last month, 10 students from the program visited Dillard University, where I had the opportunity lead them on a tour of campus to view the University’s antiquities and more recent works from students and John Barnes, program coordinator of the Art Department.

The tour started with the history of the Zulu Club in the Will A. Alexander Library. Although the exhibition is not fine art, it is a vital aspect of New Orleans culture. Afterwards, we meandered across the Oaks to the Dillard University Center for Economic Freedom (DUCIEF), where visitors’ eyes are immediately drawn to Ezekiel’s Wheel, an installation by Terry Adkins that was a part of Prospect.3: Notes for Now. The students viewed, shared their interpretations and then discussed the work that was inspired by and included a W. E. B. DuBois’ quote from “The Souls of Black Folk” on double consciousness. Other notable pieces in DUCIEF included works by John Scott, Sue Jane Smock and Elizabeth Catlett, who also taught at Dillard.  

“By familiarizing our teens with renowned art departments and introducing them to successful artists, we hope to expose students to the multitude of opportunities and career options available to them,” said Ellen Balkin, education manager at the Ogden. She added that an important goal of the Teen Docent Program is to assist New Orleans area public school students attain success in high school, college and beyond and visiting campuses is a means to accomplish that aim. Moreover, the students receive a stipend and are trained as docents and lead visitors on tours of the museum with educated insight into the art, and they are also summer camp counselors and are tasked with creating original works of art to share with community members.

Last year, Ogden’s Teen Docent Program was one among 285 across the country to be nominated and they were one of 12 to receive the 2015 National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Award, the nation’s highest honor for teen development programs.  Balkin and a student traveled to Washington, D.C., where First Lady Michelle Obama presented them with the award.   

From DUCIEF, the students visited the Office of the President, where works from Hale Woodruff, Ida Kohlmeyer and Gilbert Fletcher, ‘70, among others, is displayed. Barnes met the docents in the art gallery inside the Samuel DuBois Cook Fine Arts Center. He talked about the program and pointed out works from Dillard students and the gallery also had pieces from Barnes. I showed some of my photographs and my performance video and then we talked more about the art.    

“The art at the University is diverse,” said Jon Thomas, a senior at International High School.  Additionally, he expressed his intrigue by the classroom experience that Barnes described. Thomas said: “I love how the artists are allowed to be creative in their own way and how no one is telling them how to use their creativity.”

There is a link between the classrooms at Dillard and the gallery walls at the Ogden, home to the largest collection of Southern Art in the world. “Recently, we have worked to strengthen our relationships with Dillard University’s professors and students,” Balkin said.  She added that it’s a natural connection because both Barnes and I have exhibited at the Museum and participated in their outreach programming. I was in the Louisiana Contemporary in 2014 and The Rising in 2015.  We were both in the 2015 Louisiana Contemporary, where Barnes earned first place with a “Doe Poppin,” wooden sculpture. We are currently in Southern Parlour, a group exhibit presented by the Afrofuture Society at the Ace Hotel Gallery. Also in 2015, Lionell S. Thomas, ‘18,  and James McClue, ‘16, participated in the HBCU Art Showcase at the Ogden. This year Dillard graduates Ernest Littles and Jer’Lisa Devezin are in the Louisiana Contemporary Exhibition that runs until September 18.   

Balkin says she hopes to grow the interconnection and develop new collaborations, soon, that benefit both institutions. “I am especially proud of the fact that two of our Teen Docent alumni [Lionell S. Thomas and  Myron Solomon, ‘20]  are now students at Dillard,” Balkin said and added that they both study visual arts with Barnes.


 
DILLARD UNIVERSITY THEATRE ARTS PROGRAM ANNOUNCES OPEN AUDITIONS PDF Print E-mail
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NEW ORLEANS – Open call auditions for the Dillard University Theatre’s 81st season will take place at the Samuel DuBois Cook Theatre on Wednesday, September 7, from 2 p.m. to 5 p.m., and on Thursday, September 8, from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. and from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

All actors are asked to meet in the Cook lobby to sign up and fill out the audition form.  Auditions are open to all Dillard University students, faculty and staff as well as actors from the New Orleans area community.

Each actor must perform two contrasting, one-minute monologues at the audition and are required to bring a current headshot and resume (no exceptions will be made).

For more information contact Raymond Vrazel at (504) 816-4536 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

The Dillard University Theater program was established by S. Randolph Edmonds in 1935.  Edmonds also spearheaded the founding of the Southern Association of Dramatic and Speech Arts (SADSA), at the University. Edmonds, known as the Dean of Black Academic Theater, led the program into 1944. He taught theater at FAMU for 20 years and retired in 1968.

 
Employee Giving Campaign PDF Print E-mail
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Each year Dillard University employees support the institution through an annual giving campaign that enhances our ability to serve our students and demonstrate “the Dillard Difference.”  Participating in our Employee Giving Campaign sends a resounding message to the Dillard community and to our friends around the country that our employees are committed to our mission beyond their outstanding work inside of the classrooms and throughout our campus.

This year, we’re giving a name to our effort. The “We Care” giving campaign runs from August 19, 2016 through June 30, 2017.

Gifts to the “We Care” Campaign can be made through payroll deduction, a one-time gift by cash, check or credit card, or through gift planning made through the Dillard Office of Development.

Non-monetary contributions can also be made through your participation in the annual UNCF Walk/Run and donations to the United Way.

Our goal this year is to have 100 percent participation. That means we need YOU!  Give today and change a student’s life forever.

To donate online, visit give.dillard.edu.

For more information, contact Kimberly Woodard, Associate Director of Development, at  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

 
Dillard sophomore Jeanna Johnson chosen as 2016 HBCU All-Star PDF Print E-mail
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The White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities announced today that 73 students from across63 HBCUs have been named as the 2016 HBCU All-Stars. The All-Stars, comprised of undergraduate, graduate, and professional students, are being recognized for their accomplishments in academics, leadership, and civic engagement.

“During the course of one academic school year, the 73 All-Stars will distinguish themselves as exemplars of the talent that HBCUs cultivate and as noble ambassadors of their respective institutions,” said U.S. Secretary of Education John B. King Jr. “The Initiative is looking forward to working with this third class of All-Stars and is confident this opportunity will allow the Initiative to meaningfully connect with HBCU students and advance academic excellence at their schools.”

Over the next year, the students will serve as ambassadors by providing outreach opportunities and communicating with other students about the value of both education and the Initiative as a networking source. Using social media, relationships with community-based organizations, and sessions with industry professionals, the students will share proven practices that support opportunities for all young people to achieve their educational and career potential. They will also participate in the White House HBCU Week Conference, national and regional events, and webinars with Initiative staff and other professionals on a range of disciplines that support a spirit of engagement and personal and professional development.

“We're looking forward to working with this new class of HBCU All Stars,” said Deputy Under Secretary of Education and Acting Executive Director White House Initiative on HBCUs Kim Hunter Reed. “Our goal is to provide a unique opportunity for these talented students that exposes them to critical national conversations and thought leaders. No doubt they will make their mark and represent their campuses well.”

The All-Stars were selected from over 300 students from 24 states, the District of Columbia, Ghana, Nigeria, and the Virgin IslandsThey will work together and as a group and network with one another to achieve their goals.

NOTE TO EDITORS:  Below is a list of the 2016 HBCU All-Stars, in alphabetical order by hometown state, the school they attend and the school’s location.

ALABAMA  

Birmingham – JerAnthony Colvin, Talladega College, Talladega, Ala.

Catherine – Shannon Baldwin, Alabama Agricultural and Mechanical College, Huntsville, Ala.

Tuscaloosa – Jasmine Lavendar, Stillman College, Tuscaloosa, Ala.

 

ARKANSAS

Opelousas – Russell Williams, Philander Smith College, Little Rock, Ark.

CALIFORNIA

Los Angeles – Paris Adkins-Jackson, Morgan State University, Baltimore, Md.

Riverside – Breanna Lumpkin, Lane College, Jackson, Tenn.

CONNECTICUT

Norwalk – Andre Earls, Wiley College, Marshall, Texas

 

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA

Brittney Young – Howard University, District of Columbia

FLORIDA

Fort Lauderdale – Kennedy James, Virginia State University, Petersburg, Va.

Miami Gardens – Dominique Nicholson , Florida Memorial University, Miami Gardens, Fla.

Miami – Kiara Johnson, Houston-Tillotson University, Austin, Texas

Tampa – Victoria Harrison, Bethune Cookman University, Daytona Beach, Fla.

 

GEORGIA

Albany – Angelica Howard, Morehouse School of Medicine, Atlanta, Ga.

Albany – Chelsea Basley, Albany State University, Albany, Ga.

Atlanta – Jarell Jordan, Morehouse College, Atlanta, Ga.

Atlanta – Gabriel Carter, Oakwood University, Huntsville, Ala.

Atlanta – Alicia Montgomery, Savannah State University, Savannah, Ga.

Dehli – Vishal Singh, Fort Valley State University, Fort Valley, Ga.

 

GHANA (ACCRA)

Abednego Commey, Tougaloo College, Tougalo, Miss.

ILLINOIS

Chicago – Ashley Reid, Spelman College, Atlanta, Ga.

Chicago – Christopher Simpson, Edward Waters College, Jacksonville, Fla.

LOUISIANA

Baton Rouge – Kalaia Tripeaux, Southern University Agricultural and Mechanical College, Baton Rouge, La.

Mount Hernon – Karla Martin, Xavier University, New Orleans, La.

Rustonm – Endiah Green, Grambling State University, Grambling, La.

MARYLAND

Baltimore – Wanda Parks, Coppin State University, Baltimore, Md.

Beltsville – Benjamin Webster, University of Maryland Eastern Shore, Princess Anne, Md.

Fort Washington – Ashleigh Williams, Hampton University, Hampton, Va.

Lanham – Donovan Blake, Bowie State University, Bowie, Md.

Silver Spring – Rachel Kenlaw, Howard University, Washington, D.C.

MICHIGAN

Detroit – Michael McGee, Hampton University, Hampton, Va.

Detroit – Tiffany Brockington, Howard University, Washington, D.C.

Detroit – Vester Waters, Mississippi Valley State University, Itta Bena, Miss.

Oakland Charter Township – JaMon Patterson, Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, Ga.

MISSISSIPPI

Madison – James Griffin, Jackson State University, Jackson, Miss.

Lamar – Savahn Jordan, Rust College, Holly Springs, Miss.

Raymond – Sabrevian Davis, Hinds Community College, Raymond, Miss.

MISSOURI

Blue Springs – Alexis Pulliam, Tuskegee University, Tuskegee, Ala.

Kansas City – Jeanna Johnson, Dillard University, New Orleans, La.

St. Louis – Jabreia Taylor, Kentucky State University, Frankfort, Ky.

NEVADA

Las Vegas – Joselyn Miller, Alabama State University, Montgomery, Ala.

NEW JERSEY

Freehold – Edgar Ortiz, Delaware State University, Dover, Del.

Turnersville – Pearis Bellamy, Hampton University, Hampton, Va.

NEW YORK

Brooklyn – Destiny Modeste, Paul Quinn College, Dallas, Texas

Staten Island – Brianna Fugate, Spelman College, Atlanta, Ga.

NIGERIA (LAGOS)

Temilade Aladeniyi – North Carolina Central University, Durham, N.C.

NORTH CAROLINA

Concord – Paul McGee, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Greensboro, N.C.

Durham – Tremell Parker, Johnson C. Smith University, Charlotte, N.C.

Durham – Asheley Taylor, Bennett College, Greensboro, N.C.

Fayetteville – Kenya Glover, Livingstone College, Salisbury, N.C.

Fayetteville – Terrance McNeil, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University, Tallahassee, Fla.

Henderson – Niya Brooks, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Greensboro, N.C.

Lexington – Deja Young, North Carolina Central University, Durham, N.C.

OHIO

Akron – Britney Gibbs, Wilberforce University, Wilberforce, Ohio

OKLAHOMA

Muskogee – Nicholas Simon, Langston University, Langston, Okla.

PENNSYLVANIA

Boothwyn – Anitra Jackson, Cheney University of Pennsylvania, Cheney, Pa.

SOUTH CAROLINA

Aynor – Malcom Shealer, Meharry Medical College, Nashville, Tenn.

Orangeburg – Kingsley Uche, Claffin University, Orangeburg, S.C.

Orangeburg – Quinn Smith, South Carolina State University, Orangeburg, S.C.

TENNESSEE

Memphis – Janeisha Harris, Tennessee State University, Nashville, Tenn.

Memphis – Jasmine Dean, Rust College, Holly Springs, Miss.

Memphis – Kimble James, LeMoyne Owen College, Memphis, Tenn.

TEXAS

DeSoto – Wendon Blair, Jarvis Christian College, Hawkins, Texas

Houston – Kaleb Taylor, Texas Southern University, Houston, Texas

Houston – Sekia Wyatt, Texas Southern University, Houston, Texas

Manville – Elijah Sharpe, Lincoln University of Missouri, Jefferson City, Mo.

San Antonio – Damon Lake, St. Phillips College, San Antonio, Texas

Texarkana – Stacy Roberson, Clark Atlanta University, Atlanta, Ga.

VIRGINIA

Bristow – Chayse Lavallais, Prairie View Agricultural and Mechanical University, Prairie View, Texas

Newport News – Ravin Vick, Norfolk State College, Norfolk, Va.

Norfolk – Na’eem Wilkins, Shaw University, Raleigh, N.C.

Richmond – Danielle Ebelle, Virginia Union University, Richmond, Va.

WEST VIRGINIA

Bluefield – Michael Bennett, Bluefield State University, Bluefield, W.Va.

VIRGIN ISLANDS

St. Kitts – Joash Liburd, University of the Virgin Islands, St. Kitts, UVI

 
BRAIN FOOD: DILLARD UNIVERSITY PRESIDENT’S LECTURE SERIES ANNOUNCES FALL SPEAKER LINEUP PDF Print E-mail
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NEW ORLEANS – Brain Food: Dillard University President’s Lecture Series Fall 2016 lineup features renowned political commentators and an expert in the field of urban education.

Speakers are Rich Lowry, Dr. Christopher Emdin and Van Jones.

All lectures are free and open to the public and held in Georges Auditorium in the Dillard University Professional Schools and Sciences Building (PSB) unless otherwise noted.  Each lecture begins at 7:00 p.m. Questions about the series can be directed to 504.816.4800 or  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  The schedule and speaker bios follow.

Sep. 20

rich-lowry-national-review-rEditor of National Review, Rich Lowry is a syndicated columnist and commentator for the Fox News Channel.  He writes for Politico, Time, and often appears on such public affairs programs as Meet the Press and The McLaughlin Group.  He is the author of Lincoln Unbound andLegacy: Paying the Price for the Clinton Years – a New York Times bestseller.

Oct. 25

chris emdinDr. Christopher Emdin is an associate professor in the Department of Mathematics, Science and Technology at Teachers College, Columbia University; he also serves as Director of Science Education at the Center for Health Equity and Urban Science Education.  He is a public speaker on the issues of hip-hop education, STEM education, politics, race, class, diversity, and youth empowerment.  Dr. Emdin is also the author of For White Folks Who Teach in the Hood and the Rest of Ya’ll Too, also a New York Times bestseller.

Nov. 16

Van Jones CAA SpeakersCNN contributor Van Jones visits the Dillard campus as part of the Justice Revious O. Ortique Jr. Lecture Series.  Jones has founded and led numerous social enterprises engaged in social and environmental justice.  He has authored two New York Times bestsellers, The Green Collar Economy and Rebuild the Dream.  Among his many awards and honors, Van Jones has been selected to Ebony Magazine’s 2013 Power 100 and is a winner of an NAACP Image Award.

The Spring 2017 schedule is still in progress.

A Brief History of the Dillard Presidential Lecture Series

Beginning with the University’s first official president, William Stuart Nelson in the 1930s, public intellectual discourse has been a part of Dillard’s heritage. In the 1950s, Albert Dent organized the Edwin R. Embree Memorial Lecture Series whose guests included Eleanor Roosevelt, Thurgood Marshall, Mary McLeod Bethune, Martin Luther King Jr., and Jackie Robinson. Subsequently, Dillard presidents have assembled lectures that reflected their sensibilities. During Samuel DuBois Cook’s tenure, he established a lyceum series and built a fine arts center to provide a new venue for lectures, theater and music. Walter M. Kimbrough launched Brain Food in 2013, and has continued the tradition with speakers such as Michael Eric Dyson, Misty Copeland, Benjamin Crump and Michael Steele.  

 
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