Morgan State University introduces the Center for Civil Rights in Education

Direct: 212-573-8545
Media Contact:  Will Davison Jr.

The Center for Civil Rights in Education at Morgan State University, in partnership with The Thurgood Marshall College Fund, invites you to participate in “A National Dialogue on Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the Twenty-First Century—Comparability & Competitiveness:  The Unfinished Business of Civil Rights and Equal Educational Opportunity in the Adams States” on November 12-13, 2009, in the Carl J. Murphy Fine Arts Center on the Campus of Morgan State University.

This national two-day conference will bring together prominent television and radio personalities, former and current HBCU presidents; college faculty and administrators; civil rights and human rights lawyers and advocates; government officials; business leaders; religious, cultural and social organizations; and students to discuss one of the compelling and critical issues of the 21st century.  It will focus on issues that continue to impact the desegregation of colleges and universities in the states that operated de jure as well as de facto dual systems of higher education for black and white students.  Although court cases such as Adams v. Richardson and United States v. Fordice reflect the standards of desegregation required under Title VI of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the 14th Amendment to the Constitution, Historically Black Colleges and Universities continue their quest to be comparable to and competitive with their peer Traditionally White Institutions.  This conference will explore how the “New Era” for HBCUs rests on the unfinished business set forth in Adams and subsequent cases.


On Thursday, November 12, the conference will feature:

•    At 11:00 a.m.:  “Reflections of an Out-going President” by Dr. Earl S. Richardson, eleventh presi-dent of Morgan State University, who will end his 25-year presidency on December 31.
•    At 2:30 p.m.:  a Roundtable Discussion by present and former HBCU presidents of their personal experiences with the impact that Adams and Fordice have had on their institutions—including cur-rent Presidents Mary Sias ( Kentucky State University), Dorothy Cowser Yansey (Shaw University), and Julianne Malveaux (Bennett College for Women); and former college Presidents Fred S. Hum-phries (Florida A & M University) and H. Patrick Swygert (Howard University).
•    At 6:00 p.m.:  a Keynote Address, titled “Hell or High Water at HBCUs,” by noted author, televi-sion and radio personality, social commentator and educator, Dr. Michael Eric Dyson;

On Friday, November 13, the conference will conclude with:

•    At 10:00 a.m.:  a Panel Discussion on Comparability and Competitiveness  by prominent civil rights lawyers and advocates, about the law and the reality of  desegregation in higher education—including Tricia G. Jefferson (Senior Counsel for the Educational Opportunities Project Lawyer’s Committee for Civil Rights Under Law); Theodore M. Shaw (Professor of Professional Pract5ice at Columbia University and former President and Director-Counsel for the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc.); Raymond C. Pierce (Dean and Professor of Law at North Carolina Central University School of Law and former Deputy Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights in the U. S. Department of Education) and Pace J. McConkie (Director of Morgan’s Center for Civil Rights in Education); and


All activities for the Conference are free, except for the Luncheon (on Thursday, November 12, 2009, at 12:45 p.m.), and are open to anyone who has completed on-line or mail-in registration. Guests are encour-aged to register for the Conference and pay for the Luncheon on-line at the following address:  Please note that participation in the November 12 Luncheon re-quires the payment of a $30.00 fee for non-students and a $10.00 fee (with identification) for students.  Registration for the Luncheon is strongly recommended, since there are few dining facilities near the Morgan State University campus. The deadline for registration on-line or by mail-in registration is Novem-ber 2, 2009.  On-site registration, especially for the Luncheon, will be limited by space availability. 


The host hotel for the Conference is The Sheraton Baltimore North, 903 Delaney Valley Road, Towson, Maryland (suburb of Baltimore, only a few miles from the University), 410-494-0863.  The rate is $99.00 (plus tax and fees) per night for single, double, triple, or quadruple occupancy.  When making reservations, guests should refer to the group name, “Morgan State University HBCU Conference.”


If you need additional information, you may contact Morgan’s website for the Conference at , or call:  443-885-3090.


Morgan recently established the Center for Civil Rights in Education to unite research, teaching, training and advocacy on integral civil rights issues in education at the pre-kindergarten, elementary, secondary and post-secondary levels. The Center’s mission and purposes are national in scope, providing critical leader-ship, resources and focus to the relevant educational issues at home and in communities throughout the nation. The Center is established for the identification and study of current issues and challenges related to equal educational opportunity, particularly with respect to low-income African-American and other minor-ity students seeking real and meaningful opportunities for educational excellence and advancement. Its purpose is to develop and promote substantive research and collaboration of research, strategies, remedies, solutions, programs, public policy initiatives and appropriate advocacy necessary to overcome obstacles to educational achievement, eliminate continuing policies or practices that foster discrimination or perpetuate segregated conditions in education, and enhanced educational opportunities for all students regardless of race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status or background.

The Center for Civil Rights in Education at Morgan State University appreciates your interest in this conference and looks forward to hosting you on the campus of Morgan State University on November 12-13!