April 12, 2011 -

Howard hosted the fifth annual Hip-Hop and Higher Education Symposium: The Media And the Black Athlete held in Blackburn Center Ballroom. Melyssa Ford was the moderator for the panel. The goal of the symposium is to analyze the media’s coverage of today’s Black athletes.

The featured panelists and scholars explored the influence of hip-hop on behavior, drug abuse, materialism, misogyny, and attitudes. The panelists included: Doris Corbett, Ph.D, Mike Wise, Omari Hardwick, Michael Eric Dyson, Ph.D. and Jay Williams.

The crowd, as always, enjoyed hearing Dr. Michael Eric Dyson speaking; one of his best moments on the panel was his explanation on the relation between race and sports. “The same culture that promotes you will demonize you…Intent has nothing to do with consequence. Intent has nothing to do with results”

Dr. Doris Corbett then began an opinionated reflection on the direct correlation between hip-hop and the over-sexualization of black women. Unsurprisingly, Moderator, Melyssa Ford changed this topic of discussion quickly back to athletes and the sports industry. The forum, ended with a brief question and answer session where students and audience members posed questions to the panelists.

The Hip-Hop and Higher Education Symposium was founded by Joshua Wright, Ph.D., in 2006 to serve as a forum for students to discuss issues related to hip-hop culture and the hip-hop generation.

“The panel highlighted a lot of problems out athletes face but didn’t offer any tangible solutions. This, among other reasons, is why we consistently face the same problems since reconstruction. We get together to discuss them but not to solve them”- Junior, James Robinson.

All Photos Taken By Antoine Griffin

Here’s a video clip of the panel discussing outspoken black athletes in the media. Chris Broussard main subject was on LeBron James during this topic.



Jenelle S. Coy

School of Communications
Howard University ’14



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  1. LeDroit Park neighbor on April 14, 2011

    Good call on how fast Ms. Ford changed the subject from Dr. Corbett’s comments! Her career and tight Red dress was perfectly illustrating what The Dr was saying! LOL

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