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Dr. Steve Perry

Speaker hopes to teach students value of education

          To bring Black History Month to a close, Steve Perry will be coming to Ohio University to speak about education and its role in society.

          "Bringing someone to speak about education is of the upmost importance," said Winsome Chunnu, associate director of the Multicultural Center. "I think he is uniquely qualified to speak about education because of his background and the work he is doing at his school in Connecticut."

          Perry is the founder and principal of Capital Preparatory Magnet School in Hartford, Conn., the author of "Man Up! Nobody's Coming to Save Us" and an education contributor for CNN.

          "I'm sure I'll talk to them about is what each of them can do to have a greater impact and fulfill their own potential as an agent of change," Perry said. "I will also find out what is important to them, to start a conversation."

          The decision to bring Perry to OU was made last spring. The event is being sponsored by Black Student Cultural Programming Board and the Multicultural Center. It costs about $7,000 to bring Perry to OU, Chunnu said.

          "We thought he would be a good speaker because of his background in educational reform. He has a school that has 100 percent graduation rate," said Leah Ward, president of BSCPB.

          Perry said he hopes that students will walk away from his presentation with a sense of empowerment.

          "The solution, to these issues that we have, exists in this generation. They (youth) have the greatest access to these resources than those before them," Perry said.

          Chunnu also said she feels that students will learn more about the educational system in the U.S. and some of its problems.

          "Our students will learn about educational inequity. To understand the inequities that our prevalent in our educational system and ways and means of overcoming these inequities," Chunnu said.

          Ward, a senior studying education, said she hopes that students will gain greater appreciation for their educations.

          "Education is key. Without it we aren't able to do anything. Our parents and grandparents got lucky with being able to maybe have a trade. At OU, many students go and get a master's to get a job," Ward said. "Most students can't just get a bachelors degree and be successful with that."


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