White House Deputy Director to discuss award-winning film, American Promise, March 20

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“[The film] not only provides illuminating insights into racial and cultural issues, but explores family dynamics common to all.”Peter Keough, The Boston Globe

Dr. Ivory ToldsonEvent Details
“American Promise” & Presentation by Dr. Ivory A. Toldson
Thursday, March 20 – 4 p.m. (Doors open at 3:45 p.m.)
Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall in the Fine Arts Building
University of Arkansas at Little Rock
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RSVP for American PromiseThe UALR Institute on Race and Ethnicity will present a showing of the award-winning film, “American Promise,” and a presentation by Dr. Ivory A. Toldson, Deputy Director for the White House Initiative on Historically Black Colleges and Universities at 4 p.m. Thursday, March 20 in Stella Boyle Smith Concert Hall in the Fine Arts Building.

Toldson, who is also a celebrated senior research analyst, professor, and writer, will speak to the lessons in the film and present “Education, Ethnicity and Equity.”

The film is the winner of a 2013 Sundance Film Festival award for the U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award category. The makers of the film, Joe Brewster, a Harvard- and Stanford-trained psychiatrist, and Michèle Stephenson, a Columbia Law School graduate and filmmaker, are also the parents of one of the film’s subjects.

More about the film
Winner, U.S. Documentary Special Jury Award, 2013 Sundance Film Festival
American Promise is an intimate and provocative account, recorded over 12 years, of the experiences of two middle-class African-American boys who entered a very prestigious–and historically white–private school on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The Dalton School had made a commitment to recruit students of color, and five-year-old best friends Idris Brewster and Oluwaseun (Seun) Summers of Brooklyn were two of the gifted children who were admitted. The boys were placed in a demanding environment that provided new opportunities and challenges, yet little reflection of their cultural identities. RSVP NOW.

The University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences Center for Diversity Affairs and Say It Loud! Readers and Writers are sponsors for Dr. Toldson’s lecture.

The showing of “American Promise” is a collaboration with POV, the award winning independent non-fiction film series on PBS (www.pbs.org/pov).

More about the speaker
Toldson formerly served as an associate professor at Howard University, senior research analyst for the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and editor-in-chief of “The Journal of Negro Education.”

He has written more than 60 publications and research presentations in 36 US states, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Scotland, South Africa, Paris, and Barcelona. He has been featured on C-SPAN2 Books, NPR News, POTUS on XM Satellite Radio, and numerous local radio stations.  His research has been featured on The Root, The National Journal, Essence.com, BET.com, The Grio, and Ebony Magazine.

After completing coursework for a doctorate in Counseling Psychology at Temple University, Dr. Toldson became a correctional and forensic psychology resident at the United States Penitentiary. There, he completed his dissertation on Black Men in the Criminal Justice System. Upon completion, Dr. Toldson joined the faculty of Southern University and became the fourth recipient of the prestigious DuBois Fellowship from the US Department of Justice. He also served as the clinical director of the Manhood Training Village. He has received formal training in applied statistics from the University of Michigan, and held visiting research and teacher appointments at Emory, Drexel, and Morehouse School of Medicine.

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