Urban League President Urges Howard Students to Rebuild Black Economy PDF Print E-mail
By Karrie Leonard -- Black College Wire   

Marc H. Morial, president and CEO of the National Urban League, said a plan must be formulated now to put black people back to work and resurrect the black economy. There is urgency for a "war on unemployment," Morial said.

The State of Black America Town Hall was a program on the current state of the black community and where it' s going from here. The event was held in Cramton Auditorium.

Black College Wire file photo
Marc H. Morial
" Today, the 36th State of Black America, I envoy we put politics second and people first," Morial said.

The program consisted of speakers including President Sidney A. Ribeau; Mayor Vincent C. Gray; Xavier Williams, senior VP of AT& T Business Solutions; Maudine Cooper, president and CEO of the Greater Washington Urban League; and Valerie Rawlston Wilson of the National Urban League Policy Institute.

They all reiterated the idea that we as a people can no longer sit around and speak about theories that are not practiced.

Thaisha Genty, a freshman physician assistant major, said, " I expected a more serious dialogue from the panelists."

The panel received mixed commentaries from its audience, while some where enticed by the antics of the panel, which included Warren Ballentine, radio host; A T&T's Williams; and Michelle Singletary, nationally syndicated columnist at The Washington Post and others.

The distinguished Roland Martin and Jeff Johnson asked questiones that were compiled from Howard students and the Urban League alike. The questions centered on the central conflict of where the black community goes from here and how we realistically go about it.

The National Urban League conveyed a new plan for the black population and a new way to reach its people through utilizing social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter. Thus, commencing the League' s new website, which allows you to read the State of Black America 2011 Jobs Rebuild America: Putting Urban America Back to Work, free of charge. Contributing authors include, First Lady Michelle Obama, Marc H. Morial and Sidney A. Ribeau, among others.

Morial invoked us to " use the report as a resource, to educate others, to educate ourselves." Vertulie Pierré Louis, a junior broadcast journalism major said, " It woke me up…."

Ballentine said he goes into towns and groups of about 45 people who have $1,000 and helps them develop a realistic business plan... " and it hit me, hey, we can do that."

" Today we have come here for dialogue, for discussion and to make a difference," Morial said.

Karrie Leonard writes for The Hilltop, the Howard University student newspaper, which originally published a version of this article.


Posted Apr. 06, 2011
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