High School Students Will “Answer the Challenge” at Colorado State University’s Seventh Annual Black Issues Forum

More than 70 high-school students from across the United States will gather at Colorado State University July 8-10 to research and discuss issues facing the African-American community.

The seventh annual Black Issues Forum, titled "Answering the Challenge," will bring students from Colorado, California, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Maryland, Michigan, New Jersey, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas and Utah. Topics will include preserving the African-American family, African-Americans’ role in the legal system regarding civil rights, dispelling the myths between historically black colleges and universities and predominently white institutions, and the impact of hip-hop music on the African-American community.

The participants will research the topics, using the university’s Morgan Library, and learn to use the state-of-the-art computerized library guidance system. This process will allow students to become familiar with the knowledge and information needed to prepare themselves to discuss these issues and questions posed during the open forum "town meeting" on July 10, the last day of the program. Each student will play an assigned role in the forum ranging from a community member to a concerned parent. The student’s role may or may not coincide with their personal beliefs.

Students also will have the opportunity to personally meet and interact with Black Issues Forum alumni. These alumni are students at various colleges around the country who will share their insights of the college freshman experience.

The program is open to the public all three days with a special focus on the town meeting.

This year’s keynote speaker is Lt. Gov. Joe Rogers, who will give his address at 5:30 p.m. July 10 in the Lory Student Center Ballroom during the closing awards banquet.

"This is a solid program offering high-school students the opportunity to learn college-level research methods and interact with faculty, staff and Colorado State students to get a feel for the college experience," said Tracy Raiford, coordinator of the forum and assistant director of admissions at the university.

Students who attend the Black Issues Forum and are accepted to Colorado State are eligible to receive the Diversity Partnership Award which offers in-state students $10,000 and out-of-state students $20,000 total, distributed over four years.

For more information on the 1999 Black Issues Forum, contact Tracy Raiford at (393) 573-6315.