The Mass Black Male Graduation Ceremony 2015

2The Mass Black Male Graduation Ceremony 2015
June 20, 2015
Elders in Front, Graduates in Back at Metropolitan Apostolic Church
Black male elementary, high school and college graduates watch African drummers invoke the spirit of past elders into the ceremony.
Black male graduates listen closely for advice and tips to success at Metropolitan Apostolic Church.

 

Graduates were from elementary, high schools, and colleges throughout Chicago.

 

Elder Attorney Keynote Speaker James Montgomery extends a hand of help and hope to the young graduates.

 

Young Warrior Speaker Jasiri X, Hip Hop Artist and Activist from Pittsburgh, inspires graduates to work for change.

 

These are some of the top Black male readers in the country who were awarded large cash prizes for reading well, not basketball, not sports, not dancing or rapping. First place was $250.00.
These are some of the top Black male readers in the country (Reading Warriors) who were awarded large cash prizes for reading well–not basketball, not sports, not dancing or rapping. First place was $250.00.  Nine large cash awards were presented to readers.


There was no news coverage of this event even though we sent five media advisories to every television station, many radio stations, and all the major newspapers in Chicago.  If one of our boys had started shooting in the church, we would have led on the 10:00 pm national news! But because we were celebrating the kind of achievement that can turn around the violence, poor education and economic despair in the Black community, it seemed that no one was interested.  Even Black people were not interested.  Two day earlier, 2 million people turned out to cheer on the Black Hawks.  We seem to have our priorities straight! – Phillip Jackson, The Black Star Project

(All photos by Billy Montgomery and Catherine Jackson)