This week’s story is prefaced by graduation ceremonies, which are filled with fascinating traditions – caps, gowns, celebratory parties. Graduations are the accomplishment of moving to another level, which my nephew, Kalynn Kane, experienced.
Kalynn’s graduation from Palm Coast’s Matanzas High School was held May 26 at the Ocean Center in Daytona Beach. It was for Kalynn a sense of pride and accomplishment.
It deemed necessary upon embarking upon higher education that high school achievement scholarships were awarded to Kedron Abbott, Samantha Brown, E’Lexus Jefferson and Orayah Phillip.
On May 28, announcements were made that Kedron was awarded the $1,000 Jack Jones Memorial Scholarship and Samantha was presented with the $500 Dr. Madalin Price Scholarship.
Chairman Jeanette Wheeler and her Youth Black History Reality Committee of the African American Cultural Society (AACS) touted the total 2016 scholarship awards to be $5,000.
The Jack Jones Memorial Scholarship – rendered by John Jones, former Bowie, Maryland-based national weather service meteorologist – is attributed to John Jones’ dad, Jack Jones, a Tuskegee airman/postal worker, whose priorities involved education.
The Dr. Madalin Price Scholarship, provided by Dr. Herman Price, M.D., was offered to a promising graduate in memory of his wife, Madalin, an AACS member and former radio/TV reporter, producer, director and anchor; Library of Congress copyright specialist, actress and college professor.
Learning made fun
The graduating students have done their best to prepare for college, and have discovered their passions. They have benefitted from their annual participation in the “Youth Black History Reality Shows’’ sponsored by the committee during Black History Month.
The students have made learning fun, showcasing entertainment and lauding the achievements of African-Americans such as Frederick Douglass, James Weldon Johnson, Osceola McCarty, Dr. Patricia Bath, Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, President Barack Obama, and others.
Scholarships have been awarded to these students, having culminated their participation in the shows and having attained scholastic achievement.
From a story captivating the society’s April/May “Scribe,” writer Loretta S. McCray affirms that “Samantha Brown has a passion for scientific inquiry and plans to become a chemical engineer. This fall, she will be attending Tuskegee University.
“Kedron Abbott plans to attend the University of Alabama. Presently, his interest is in computer science. Kedron is an impressive individual already demonstrating strong leadership skills in his school, church, and community.
In the mainstream of the membership meeting, Chairman Wheeler allowed the recipients to speak, who elaborated their readiness for the next steps in their lives. Abbott articulated applying knowledge to insight and saying, “You can make your dreams come true. You’re the only one that can make your dreams come true, and as you accept your dream, it will become more manageable.”
“In the fall, E’Lexus Jefferson plans to attend Stetson University and major in biology. For the past two years, she has been a part of the Flagler Palm Coast High School Veterinarian Program, studying Animal Medicine – and from which she graduated as a Certified Veterinarian Assistant.”
Already focused on a global view, Orayah Phillip “plans to attend the University of North Florida and major in International Business. Already thinking beyond her Bachelor’s degree, she also plans to attend law school and create her own law firm.”
Seed to reality
More than 13 years ago, a seed was planted in Wheeler’s mind to involve youth in an active way of increasing their knowledge of African-American history and its contribution to the world stage.
Wheeler nourished the seed of thought and enriched the idea, involving others to bring the idea to fruition – a reality for all to learn and enjoy.
As a result, the “Youth Black History Reality Show’’ has celebrated 13 years of active, educational learning, involving youth through cooperative parents, community and organizational support.
In 2010, the Youth Black History Reality Committee implemented a scholarship program to further support the post-secondary, educational goals of participating youth.
AACS hosting free Juneteenth event
The African American Cultural Society once again will host a Juneteenth celebration. The event will take place June 18 at the cultural center, 4422 U.S. 1 North, Palm Coast. Juneteenth is the nationwide holiday that celebrates the end of slavery in America.
All are invited to this free, cultural event, supported in part by the City of Palm Coast.
It will honor African and African-American ancestors through song, dance and dramatic performances. Parents are encouraged to bring children for this educationally entertaining experience.
While the program will begin at noon, vendors, along with a face painter making a big hit, will be on hand at 10 a.m.
To help defray any other expenses, freewill donations will be gratefully accepted at the event and online at aacspc. eventbrite.com.
For further details, call the cultural center at 386-447-7030.
Carn to entertain at Gospel Café
The incomparable Doug Carn will take center stage with the Doug Carn Trio, playing the Gospel Café, June 3, 7 p.m., at 91 Old Kings Road, Palm Coast.
A composer, arranger, pianist, organist and bandleader, Carn will take his creations to another level. He’s acclaimed at writing lyrics to jazz classics and rendering adaptations of “Infant Eyes,” “Adam’s Apple,” “Revelation,” “A Love Supreme,” and other releases.
During the 1970s, his former wife, Jean Carn, was a featured vocalist on his recordings.
Born in New York City, Doug Carn was reared in St. Augustine. And, having it together, he finished his education at Georgia State College.
He has released albums with Earth Wind & Fire, and worked with Lou Donaldson and Stanley Turrentine. Carn is versatile, playing keyboards, the oboe, saxophone, and other instruments, and using the human instrument of his voice. He is resigned to set the perfect mood for the Gospel Café.
The donation is $15.
Call the church for tickets at 386-446-5759, where the Rev. Gillard S. Glover serves as pastor.
First Church is located at 91 Old Kings Road North, Palm Coast.
As always, remember our prayers for the sick, afflicted and bereaved.