The University’s annual Brown
vs. Board of Education event featured social entrepreneur Ron Walker,
Executive Director of the Coalition of
Schools Educating Boys of Color. Walker’s presentation, I am My Brother’s Keeper, addressed Rivier’s freshmen class on
the Coalition’s activities to connect, inspire, support, and strengthen school
leaders’ dedication to the social, emotional, and academic development of boys
and young men of color.
“Continuously expanding educational opportunities is an
investment in our collective future,” says Sister Paula Marie Buley, IHM,
Rivier’s president. “By raising our students’ awareness and providing
opportunities to support these efforts, we advance the dialogue and progress
toward educational equity for all students.”
the historical importance of the Brown v. Board of Education U.S.
Supreme Court landmark decision that ended state-sponsored
segregation in public education; explored the ways equity continues to be
elusive, specifically in regard to education for young people of color; and
created awareness of organizations working toward providing equitable
access and ways to support their activities.
At the conclusion of the presentation, questions from the
audience were answered including “What
should future teachers know?” Walker
responded, “I want teachers to first understand who they are. This
understanding of self is first and foremost. Second, understand the student
population that you are going to serve. Often
you may have something in common with them. Third, knowing what you are going
to teach and being able to learn from master teachers. You want to be with
people who understand success and excellence. That is part of the secret sauce.
And lastly, be a constant learner.”
The I am My Brother’s Keeper
presentation was a component of Rivier’s Student
Success: Campus to Community program for first-year students. This
program is designed to help new students understand themselves
as learners and servants of the community, and to increase their cultural
The event also
supported Nashua Mayor James Donchess’ My
Brother’s Keeper Community Challenge, a White House initiative aimed at helping youth achieve success
in life. The Mayor spoke at the event, addressing the Rivier community as
well as key Nashua city officials and members of the My Brother’s Keeper
Office of Multicultural Affairs and the Brown v. Board of Education Advisory
Committee hosted the event. Since 2002, these groups have sponsored on- and
off-campus events promoting educational equity and access in the United States.