Education Company To Organize a National Signing Day for All Black Males (Including the Ones Who Don't Play Sports)

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Learningateway announces Real Men Graduate National Signing Day - a national day of recognition and celebration for Black males who will be entering college for the first time (or returning after a break of a semester or more) in 2015. Simultaneous events will be held in New York, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Oakland and Los Angeles on May 12th. The number of Black males to be recognized is projected to exceed 100,000.

If it’s okay for Black men to be the sole subject of a negative story, it has to be okay for them to be the sole subject of a positive one

One week ago the world of college sports celebrated National Signing Day, the day when student athletes submit letters of intent to the college or university they will play for in the fall. While a disproportionate number of those young men were Black, the majority of Black males who will attend college in 2015 will not be athletes. Learningateway is organizing Real Men Graduate National Signing Day on Tuesday May 12th to recognize these college prospects. Events will take place in eight cities – New York, Washington D.C., Atlanta, Chicago, Detroit, Houston, Oakland and Los Angeles.

Learningateway is a social impact company focused on improving access to quality educational experiences for non-traditional college students and prospects. Real Men Graduate is its initiative to promote Black male achievement through higher education. Founder and CEO, Dr. Candis Best commented on the rationale behind this National Signing Day and why it’s focused on Black males: “We launched our Real Men Graduate Facebook campaign before Michael Brown and Eric Garner but after Trayvon Martin and long after Rodney King. In the aftermath of the Ferguson and Garner demonstrations it occurred to me that the only times we seem to have a national dialogue about Black males is when it involves a tragedy.”

Best continued, “if it’s okay for Black men to be the sole subject of a negative story, it has to be okay for them to be the sole subject of a positive one.”

This year also marks the 20th anniversary of the Million Man March, which makes the timing particularly appropriate. Learningateway expects the total number of RMG Signing Day honorees and supporters to far surpass that historic event.

“This year there are 11,000 Black males enrolled in 12th grade in New York City alone,” said Best. “Add to that number, older males who will choose to return to college this year and we’re projecting that at least 100,000 Black males across the country will be recognized on May 12th. If Black lives really matter, we should have no trouble finding 10 people to come out and show their support for every male who will be recognized.”

Houston Community College will serve as the lead organizer for the Houston event and an announcement regarding the lead organizer for New York City is expected in the coming weeks. Additional details will be released as the lead organizers for the remaining six cities are announced and honorees begin making their decisions about the colleges they will attend.

Real Men Graduate National Signing Day is being organized as a national day of recognition and celebration for Black males who will be entering college for the first time or returning after a break of a semester or more in 2015. For additional information on how interested parties can participate visit Learningateway.com/rmgday. #rmgsigningday

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Dr. Candis Best
Learningateway
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Catherine Gichenje
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