WestStar ALStar African American Youth Leadership Summit rescheduled

Due to the threat of inclement weather, the ALStar African American Youth Leadership Summit is rescheduled for Feb. 14. The University of Tennessee at Martin WestStar Leadership Program and Alex Beene, assistant coordinator for the State of Tennessee, will host this conference at the West Tennessee AgResearch and Education Center in Jackson. The inaugural summit was held in 2021, and the conference was held virtually until this year.

The ALStar Summit provides African American high school sophomores in West Tennessee the opportunity to learn from businessmen and women, including a panel of UT Martin alumni from varying fields of study. Students will also learn about Blue Oval City and the positive impacts it will have on West Tennessee.

“So many of our West Tennessee students start to form a rough idea of their life goals during their high school years but lack the information and encouragement to make those goals a reality,” said Beene. “We formed this conference to provide them access to speakers who have been down their paths before and now enjoy the success many of them want to achieve.”

The summit will feature a keynote address from Dr. Mark McCloud, vice chancellor for diversity and inclusion at UT Martin. Other guest speakers include UT Martin Chancellor Keith Carver; Kameron Echols, interim assistant director, UT Martin Multicultural Affairs; Mark Herbison, president and CEO, HTL Advantage; Michael Banks, attorney and CEO, Haywood Park Community Hospital – Brownsville; Sheronda Green, community engagement lead, Blue Oval City; Candice McCloud, UT Martin admissions counselor; Samuel Williams, media strategist, Droga5; Brandon Jones, communications director, CivicTN; Porter Streator, financial advisor, Northwest Mutual; Deniece Thomas, commissioner, Tennessee Department of Labor and Workforce Development; Matt Marshall, president and CEO, United Way of West Tennessee; and Dr. Youlanda Jones, president, Tennessee College of Applied Technology – Ripley, Covington and Newbern. Students can also visit educational booths during the summit.

For more information about the ALStar African American Youth Leadership Summit, contact Jennifer Black, WestStar program manager, at jblack32@utm.edu.

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