Turn on the television or open a newspaper and it’s both likely and unfortunate news about young Black men, gun violence and murder will gain your attention. Actually, violence has become such a common occurrence in black and Brown neighborhoods that one could argue its news value. While leading and bleeding have always shadowed front pages, violence in Trenton and other urban areas has reached who gives a damn levels. That’s what made Saturday morning extraordinarily interesting as well-dressed young men entered Trenton Central High School.
Several hundred guests attended the Northeastern Province of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc. and the Trenton Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi, Inc. 2022 Northeastern Province Kappa League Leadership Conference.
The full-day program curated by the Trenton Alumni Chapter, included African American and Latino young men (ages 14-18 years old), their chaperones, and members of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity.
The conference hoped to build awareness of a broad array of career opportunities, provide access to successful men and women whom they can relate, and galvanize the entire community with respect to the challenges faced by young men of color as they seek to realize a place of usefulness and honor in the world.
“The Trenton Alumni Chapter is excited to host the 2022 Northeastern Province Kappa League Leadership Conference this year,” said Brian Taylor, polemarch of the Trenton Alumni Chapter of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
“This event is a part of Kappa Alpha Psi’s national service program known as “Guide Right.” The conference is fundamental in providing young Black men in our communities the guidance, examples of success, and the inspiration to seek greatness as they grow. We thank each of the speakers, businesses, and organizations that have volunteered their time to support this endeavor.”
Trenton Mayor Reed Gusciora advised young men to take advantage of the mentors made available through the Kappa event.
“This is what’s so important, that you have mentorships, that you have goals in life, and that there are people, older folks, who will impart their wisdom so that you can go on your journey in life,” Gusciora said.
The first-term mayor remembered being on the right side of a fight for building a new school. Reopened in 2019, the new facility cost approximately $160 million.
Gusciora joined many students, parents, faculty and residents who pushed for a new high school after former Gov. Chris Christie had taken the redevelopment project offline.
In fact, yesterday’s conference allowed for ideas that expand school availability beyond weekly classroom opportunities. Imagine a high school that opens on Saturday, allowing use of computers, gymnasium, library, swimming pool, and auditorium, etc.
Officials and leaders must push the envelope to expand education opportunities. Plus, partnerships with organizations such as Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity can provide chances for success.
Gusciora hoped that the conference helped guests to “reaffirm the positivity students can develop in life.
By L.A. PARKER,The Trentonian, PUBLISHED: April 9, 2022