This year's event, The African American Experience: Dreams in Action was held at the Educational Cultural Complex. Continuing Education faculty, staff, students, and community members were enlightened by the poetic renditions and biographical sketch of keynote speaker Dr. Dorothy Smith who grew up in the segregated South of the 40s and 50s.
Dr. Smith has had a distinguished 31-year career as a professor of English and Rhetoric. She was the first African American woman in San Diego to be elected to public office and served two years as a member of the Board of Education for San Diego City Schools.
The event also included entertainment by Teye Sa Thiosanne West African Drum and Dance Troupe’s drum call, San Diego School of Performing Art (SCPA) students.
Hassan El-Amin‘s compilation of songs about slavery and civil rights captivated the audience with his “golden voice.” Hassan is a regional and national stage actor who has performed as the main character in Walt Disney’s “The Lion King” in at the Kennedy Center and Mark Taper Forum in Los Angeles.
The event ended with a reception that encouraged guests to view the award-winning MLK parade float entry, a rendition of the famous Rosa Parks bus that was built by students in the San Diego Continuing Education Welding Job Training/Certificate Program. The float won the Grand Sweepstakes award in the MLK parade this year.