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Graduate Students

African American Studies


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Sharlene Diamond
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

Sharlene Diamond received a BA in Africana Studies with honors and Anthropology-Sociology from Hobart and William Smith Colleges in May 2011. Her Senior Honors Thesis, entitled Dancehall Kings and Queens: ‘Profiling’ Gender in Jamaican Dancehall Culture, explores masculinity and femininity as a performance in Jamaican Dancehall culture. Sharlene’s research interests include Black identity development; presentation of Black images and the representation of Black people in popular culture through the mediums of film and music; exploring the intersection of race, class, and gender at the structural as well as the individual level; Afro-Caribbean culture; Tourism and the Caribbean; and the migration of Afro-Caribbean people.



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Vivian Guetler
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

Vivian F. Guetler is from Mombasa, Kenya, she received her BA degree in English and American Studies from the Alpen Adria Klagenfurt University in Klagenfurt, Austria. Before graduating, she also attended the University of West Florida, Pensacola during the Spring semester 2012 for a study abroad program. Vivian’s research interests include Black Diaspora, Human Rights, Identity, Biracial Identity issues, Education of the immigrants especially refugees, racism and social injustices, empowerment of women, international relations and political science.



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Margaret "Meg" Loveless
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

Meg Loveless received a BA in multidisciplinary studies from the University of Oklahoma in May 2012 with a focus on English – Literary and Cultural Studies, African & African American Studies, and History. As a graduate fellow, her research interests include the notions of authenticity in hip-hop, the prison industrial complex, color-blind racism’s impact on political and societal structures, and activist scholarship. After receiving her master’s degree from Syracuse, she plans on pursuing her PhD.



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Philip Pantaleo
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

Philip Pantaleo is from Seattle, WA where he received his B.A. in French with a minor in Global African Studies from Seattle University. His undergraduate studies focused on the French Caribbean and Negritude as his degree programs overlapped through the literature of the region. Following graduation, Philip engaged in environmental justice work in his community in Seattle working with local non-profit organizations. He volunteered at the Northwest African American Museum in the city assisting the education programs at the museum. He taught in English in two high schools in Martinique. His research interests are in Afro-Francophone literature, music and cultural production, Caribbean politics and history, Negritude, Pan-Caribbeanism, identity, political agency, music and social movements, social justice, relationships between the Caribbean and Europe and the U.S. His approach to research is interdisciplinary blending history, political science, ethnomusicology, and cultural studies.



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SaQuota Reaves
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

SaQuota Reaves received a BA in African American Studies and Women’s and Gender Studies from Syracuse University in May 2013. SaQuota’s research interest includes African American Religious History, Protest, and Social Movements: Civil Rights/ Black Power Movements. She is an active member in Image Initiatives, a non-profit organization that helps empower young women of color. As a master’s student in Pan- African Studies at Syracuse University, SaQuota serves as Teaching Assistant. SaQuota wants to do her Master’s Thesis on Black Women Preachers in Upstate, NY.



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Hamdi Tartarini
2015, expected graduate, PAS program

Hamdi Tartarini is from Mombasa, Kenya where she received a diploma in International Baccalaureate. She later enrolled in United States International University where she received a BA in International Relations and Diplomacy. Her undergraduate studies focused on Foreign Policy and Development studies. She also partook in numerous Community Service programs and worked with local NGOs. Hamdi is passionate about gender studies, regionalism and global Pan-Africanism. Her research topic will focus on the role of the EAC in reinforcing Pan-African solidarity.



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Heidy Borja
2014, expected graduate, PAS program

Heidy Borja Hernandez received her law degree with a specialization in criminal law from the Universidad de Especialidades Espiritu Santo (Ecuador) in August, 2012. She provided legal aid from 2010 to 2011 in the UEES legal office, in particular family law. As a masters student in Pan African Studies at Syracuse University, Heidy’s research focuses on the criminalization of racist acts in Ecuador and its effectiveness on the legal system. Her investigation analyses the enforcement of the constitution, criminal code and international law to enforce the principle of non-racial discrimination. Currently, she is a Teaching Assistant for Prof. Kishi Animashaun Ducre.



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Jeanelle Hope
2014, expected graduate, PAS program

Jeanelle Hope is a native of Oakland, CA; she received her B.A. in History and Africana Studies from California State University, Long Beach in 2012. Her undergraduate research primarily focused on the portrayal of African Americans in graphic novels and comic books. During one of the opportunities she had to study abroad, Jeanelle conducted research on Black Power in England, a project which went on to inspire the current trajectory of her research as well as her broader research interests. Those research interests include, African American women’s history, Black feminism, African Americans in the west, Afro-Asian encounters, comparative ethnic studies, and Black Power era organizations, including: the Black Panther Party, Red Guard Party, and Asian American Political Alliance. Currently, Jeanelle is working towards completing her master’s thesis, tentatively titled, Black, Yellow, and Shades of Purple: Radical Afro Asian Activism in the San Francisco Bay Area From the Perspectives of the Women in the the Struggle, 1967-1972. The work explores Afro Asian collective activism in the East Bay by examining the relationship between the Black Panther Party and Asian American Political Alliance. Moreover, this work grounds itself in the narratives of women of the respective organizations and it is their experiences that are highlighted and help unfold this history. Jeanelle is currently a Teaching Assistant, department representative and senator in the Syracuse University Graduate Student Organization (GSO), and Publicly Active Graduate Education (PAGE) fellow. This past summer Jeanelle was named as one of the Central New York Humanities Corridor Visiting Scholars. Over the past semester she has been collecting materials from various archives within the region that will be used towards another research project that uses poetry by Black women and Black queer identifying from the Black Power era to broaden the historical narrative of the period. Following graduation in May of 2014, Jeanelle hopes to pursue further graduate studies in History and Ethnic studies.



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Nicole Hylton-Patterson
2014, expected graduate, PAS program

Nicole Hylton-Patterson received a BA in African American Studies and Philosophy from Mount Holyoke College in May 2009. Her Senior Thesis explored Black Feminist interventions in Africana Philosophy. Nicole’s research interests include Black Feminist Scholarship and Activism in Caribbean; LGBT Rights and Queer Diaspora Studies; Color, Class, Gender, and Sexuality in the Caribbean; and Discourses in Afro-Caribbean Culture and Histories. Nicole’s Master’s Thesis in Pan African Studies considers the role of color and class in mediating homophobia in Jamaica. The research interrogates the state’s role in maintaining homophobia and how color and class renders security for some members of the LGBT community in Jamaica.



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Peta Long
2014, expected graduate, PAS program

Peta Long received a Bachelor of Arts degree, Second Class Honors from The University of the West Indies (UWI), Mona Campus, Jamaica in July 2008, where she studied Philosophy and Media and Communication. In Philosophy, her final year dissertation entitled “Ethics in the Media”, examined the normative study of ethics as it pertains to the practice of media, drawing on cases in Media Law and Ethics for Caribbean Journalism. Her final year project “Caribbean Film Production Programme” in Media and Communication was two tiered, and encapsulated her specialization in Multimedia; focusing on Caribbean Film, she launched a communications campaigned the promoted the exposure of films across the Caribbean at the Mona Campus. He research focused on the issues concerning exposure and development of Caribbean Filmmakers and in an effort to increase awareness held a series of film screening that exposed students to this niche Filmography. Following her Bachelors, Peta Long started her Phd in Philosophy at UWI, looking Pragmatism and its critique of Philosophy as a methodology to examine Caribbean Philosophy. She has participated in Seminars at Emory University and University of Oregon, and regularly participates in the Cave Hill Philosophy Symposium. She is a member of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy, and the Society for Philosophy of Sex and Love. Peta’s research interests include Public Intellectual Discourse, Caribbean and Latin American Studies and history, Critical Race Theory, Questions of Identity, Pragmatism, Social and Political Philosophy, Human Rights and Activism. She is particularly interested in scholarship in action, utilizing her skills in public campaigns, and research to talk and act. Currently, she is working on her Master’s Thesis, examining Michael Manley’s first two terms as Prime-Minister of Jamaica, in the 1970s. For her, this research symbolizes a change in Jamaica’s social and political identity, and she hopes to explore the foundations of that change, by looking particularly at his speeches and institutions. This work incorporates much of her research interests and culminates as a socio-political history study. As a masters student in Pan African Studies at Syracuse University, Peta is also serving as a University Senator 2013-2014, and sits on the Diversity Committee for the University, as well as Co-Chair for the Research and Travel Grants Committee for the Graduate Students Organization. Peta is pursuing her Certificate in University Teaching and a Certificate of Advance Study in Latin America and the Caribbean. Follow her work at: http://syr.academia.edu/PetaLong LinkedIN: http://www.linkedin.com/in/petalong Twitter: @petalong



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Calvin Walds
2014, expected graduate, PAS program

Calvin Walds was born and raised in Detroit, Michigan. He graduated from Albion College (Albion, MI) in 2012 with degrees in Political Science and Ethnic Studies, with a minor in History. He was the recipient of the Royal G. Hall Prize, which is awarded to the top graduating senior in Political Science. He completed an Honors thesis on “James Baldwin, Ralph Ellison and the Negro’s Humanity” in which he engaged the non-fiction essays of Baldwin and Ellison and their critiques of the representation of African-Americans in protest literature. During his time at Albion, Calvin studied abroad in Durban, South Africa and completed field research on Black South African media, which included an internship at Genuine Magazine (based in Durban), and culminated in the paper “A Mouthpiece to Inform, to Inspire, and to Educate: The Media Development and Diversity Agency’s Impact on Black African Media in Durban, Kwa-Zulu Natal”. During his undergraduate tenure Calvin was an active participant in the Great Lakes College Association Student of Color Leadership Conferences and presented annually on topics such as “Urban Aesthetics: Greening Efforts in Detroit MI”. In 2012 Calvin was selected as a Humanity in Action Fellow and studied human and minority rights in Paris, France with fellows from the United States, France, and Turkey. As a graduate student at Syracuse University in the Pan-African Studies MA program in the department of African-American Studies, Calvin has worked to cultivate and build upon his undergraduate training in hopes of continuing towards a PhD program. His research interests are diverse and ever expanding, and include questions of memory, embodiment and racialization, literatures of the African Diaspora, narrative theory, violence, human and minority rights on the African continent and the United States, post-industrial geopolitics, Black and African philosophy and political theory (Black existentialism and Africana phenomenology), travel and Black expatriates, affect theory and emotion, and James Baldwin studies. In exploring these questions, Calvin has presented at graduate student conferences at Duquesne University, Stony Brook University (Manhattan), and the University of Michigan. Additionally, he has completed field research towards his MA thesis (which interrogates questions of movement, subjectivity, and human connections for people of African descent) in Amsterdam, Ghana, and Detroit, MI. As addendums to this field research, he worked with Cheerful Hearts Foundation in Ghana in addressing child labor in fishing communities outside of Accra and taught English to Grade 6 students. In Detroit, MI he worked with the international organization buildOn with high school students in undertaking leadership, personal development, and community service activities. Calvin is committed to community engagement as part of his academic journey and continues to work with MBAD’s African Bead Museum in Detroit, MI, a site of artistic activism, and the Detroit LIFE (Leaders Invested for Future Equality) Coalition. He is currently interning with Inkululeko (based in Syracuse, NY) a non-profit organization that works in Grahamstown, South Africa with high school aged students. Calvin is deeply appreciative of the Pan-African studies program and continually inspired by the work--academic, artistic, and activist--of the members of the Pan-African studies community.



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Anne Margaret Childress
2014, expected graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: "Issues of Housing, Employment and Education for Multicultural People of African Descent in Syracuse, New York: Ethnography and Narrative Drama"



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Virgillo Hunter
2013 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Postwar Jamaican Immigrants in Brixton, England 1948-1962: Citizenship, Transnationalism and Communalism



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Henry Muoki wa Mbunga
2013 graduate, PAS program
Title: “Thaai thathaiyai Ngai thaai”: Narratives of Ritual, Agency, and Resistance in the KLFA (Mau Mau) Struggle for Kenya’s Independence

Muoki wa Mbunga is from Nairobi, Kenya. He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication from Daystar University, where he graduated with honors in June 2010. His research interests include cultural resistance movements in Africa and the Diaspora, African Spirituality, Afrocentricity and African Literature. He strongly believes that the deep-seated African values of spirit and community are the embers that will fan the Pan-African flame in the 21st Century. After completing his MA degree, he hopes to pursue a PhD in Pan African Studies and eventually go back home to teach.



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Fred Otieno
2013 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Deepening Democracy at the Grassroots level: Citizen participation in State Devolved Funds (CDF) in Kenya

Fred Otieno is from Western Kenya-East Africa. He did his undergraduate work at Kenyatta University in Nairobi where he graduated with a Bachelor’s Degree in Education Arts Kiswahili, History and Political Studies in the year 2008. He is also finalizing research work on a Postgraduate Diploma in Public Relations Management course at The Kenya Institute of Management. During the 2010/2011 academic year, he was a Fulbright Language Teaching Assistant (Kiswahili) at Yale University where he took non degree graduate courses at the Yale Jackson Institute for Global Affairs and worked as a cultural informant. His research interests are Comparative Politics, Electoral Process Monitoring and Observation, Democratization & Governance as well as Foreign Aid Policies. Upon completing his master’s degree, he looks forward to working with both state and non-state actors around the globe in solving the problems bedeviling the world particularly sub-Saharan Africa and other developing countries. Fred believes that most of developing countries have adequate or even better endowments and that the missing link is in strong and practical policies and practices in governance. He plans to get his PhD in Public Policy or Political Science upon completing his Master’s program.



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Courtney Sargent
2013 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Lady Exua Sings the Blues: Contextualizing Ritual Response to Violence and Gendered Conflict in Salvadore, Bahia, Brazil



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Brandi Williams
2013 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Disrupting Discourses of Failure: Counter narratives of black male students and academic success

Brandi Williams is from Evanston, IL. She did her undergraduate work at Northeastern Illinois University in Chicago, IL where she majored in Elementary Education and minored in Spanish. Brandi received her BA degree in Education and participated in the McNair Scholars Program at NEIU in December 2010. Her research interest include but are not limited to Pan African Studies, Women and Gender Studies, Feminist Theory/Movement, and Religious Movements, and how all of the above impact the Black woman and family in the United states and in the African diaspora. Through studying literature and family structures both past and present, familial values and patterns, and generational strongholds I hope to build and/or aid organizations in empowering and strengthening the Black family which in turn would strengthen the Black community.



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Kirsten R. Willis
2013 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: "Reconstruction and the Reorientation of African American Energy in Walker County, Texas"

Kirsten R. Willis is from Huntsville, Texas. She did her undergraduate work at Sam Houston State University where she majored in History. Her minors were Secondary Education and Sociology. Kirsten received her BA degree in History from Sam Houston in December of 2009. Her research interests deal with parallels in history and experiences of African Americans during the 19th and 20th centuries. Her current research focuses on life during the Reconstruction Era in East Texas. Kirsten aspires to join the faculty of an accredited university with these same interests where she will make declarations about history and her interpretations of it known through historical, scientific, theoretical and philosophical comparisons. She believes her mission is to encourage the parallel of “different” worlds until the illusion of division is recognized. She plans to pursue a PhD in History upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies.



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Sitingawawo Kachipande
2012 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: (Re)branding Africa for Development: Nation branding, Image, Identity, and Tourism in Malawi

Sitinga is from Malawi and has lived in (apartheid) South Africa, (West) Germany and the Washington DC metro area. She received her MBA at Hood College, where she has volunteered as VP of Marketing and Communications for the board of the National Association of Women MBA's - Hood College. She received her BSc in Anthropology and Sociology from Truman State University with a double minor in African/African-American Studies and International Studies. At Truman, she served as President and co-founder of the African Students Association and as President of the International Club. She was inducted in Who's Who Amongst Students in American Colleges ans Universities. Her career experience includes working in the healthcare and non-profit field. She volunteered as a board member with the Malawi Washington Association. Her research interests include socio-economic development, international relations, nation branding, identity studies, public policy, social marketing, and media advocacy. Upon the completion of her degree in Pan African Studies, she hopes to continue work and education in these areas.



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Chene Redwood
2012 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Voices of the Subaltern: the Quest for Environmental Justice through music in Umlazi and Wentworth, South Africa

Chene Redwood is from St. Andrew, Jamaica. He graduated from the University of the West Indies Mona where he received a Bachelors of Arts Degree with honors in History. While at the University of West Indies Mona, he served as the Public Relations Officer of the Marcus Garvey Movement. He also served as a student coordinator for the Black Power Two Conference and worked as a volunteer at the Jamaica National Bicentenary Committee and Reggae Global Conference. Additionally, He works on his church's national youth committee where he helps to plan and coordinate activities for the development and empowerment of the youth. His research interests include, but are not limited to Garveyism and its role in the revitalization and reconstruction of Black Caribbean ethnicity, history and identity, as well as the Black Power Movement and youth activism in the 1970s. Upon completion of his MA degree in Pan African Studies, he plans on pursuing a PhD in social policy



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Carieta Thomas
2012 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Beyond the 'Iron Lady': Paternalism, Feminism, Reconciliation, and the Future of Liberia

Carieta Thomas was born in Guyana and came to Atlanta, Ga. for high school. Since attending an extremely diverse high school, with representation from 58 different countries, Carieta has been deeply interested in international relations. During high school she worked tutoring students in ESOL and volunteered with various refugee resettlement organizations. Her involvement with these communities has enriched her experiences and has had a profound effect on how she views the world and the people in it. In the summer of 2009 Carieta participated in the Summer Intern Program at the Carter Center where she was a member of the Liberia Team in the Conflict Resolution Department. There she gained experience in working with a larger NGO, acquired immense knowledge on the history and current situation of Liberia, and developed an even deeper interest in the historical and current connections between countries. She further participated in the Liberian peace process by completing a project with the International Center for Transitional Justice. One of the most compelling aspects of her work was the fact that it afforded her a relationship with members of the Liberian Diaspora grappling with the issues back home. Carieta graduated from Agnes Scott College with a Bachelor¿s Degree in International Relations and Africana Studies. Upon receiving her M.A. in Pan-African Studies, she plans to enter law school. Her aspiration is to use her education to continue her work in conflict resolution and more specifically to engage in the growing field of reconciliation.



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Stephanie Armelin
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: “N.O. Time to Wait": The Impact of Hurricane Katrina on the Educational Experience in New Orleans

Stephanie C. Armelin is from Baldwin , LA. She did her undergraduate work at Dillard University in New Orleans , LA where she majored in psychology. Stephanie received her BA degree in Psychology with honors in May 1996. Her research interests are education and the intellectual empowerment of (all) people of African descent, and how active involvement of individual communities will serve to empower people in Africa and the Caribbean, as well as the United States . Stephanie hopes to create an organization that will be a viable educational tool in the global arena. This program, tentatively called E.C.C.E.L. (Every Child Can Enrich Lives), would be an international organization in which young people of African descent would be given the practical tools that are necessary to improve their health and well-being as well as those of others in their communities on both an intellectual and an economic level. Stephanie believes that when young people who truly have the desire to empower their communities take full advantage of the educational process, true progress will be made. E.C.C.E.L. will be centered around the idea that children should be our focus and that THEIR success should be our goal. But, the greater message of the program will be that the purpose of one's self-empowerment always must be to empower families, communities, and ultimately the world. Upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies, Stephanie plans to continue on to receive a PhD in African-American Studies.



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Tanara Haynes
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Reclaiming the legitimacy of indigenous knowledge systems with specific reference to traditional healing and community mobilization to combat HIV/AIDS in Uganda

Tanara L. Haynes was born in Fort Hood, Texas and now resides in Waldorf, Maryland. She did her undergraduate work at Howard University in Washington, D.C. where she majored in Broadcast Journalism. Tanara¿received her BA degree in Broadcast with honors from Howard University in May of 2009. ¿Her intentions are to learn about the history of blacks and to analyze how they are portrayed in the media through out the Diaspora. Tanara hopes to travel the world and study more about African people. She believes that it is her duty and responsibility to bring about change in her community here in the states and abroad. Upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies, Tanara plans to focus on teaching full time in areas like Washington, D.C. She hopes to one day open up her own community center so that she can further help empower the black community.



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Wilbert Mahenge
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Transboundary Water Resources Management and Regional Cooperation: The East African Community and 1929 Nile Treaty

Wilbert Mahenge is from Iringa, Tanzania. He received his B.A degree in Language Studies, majoring in English and Swahili with a minor in French, (B.A in Language Studies) with honors, from the University of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania in June 2007. From July 2007 to July 2008, Wilbert taught English and Swahili at a public high school in Tanzania. From August 2008 to May 2009 he was a Fulbright FLTA teaching Swahili at Syracuse University, Syracuse, New York. Wilbert believes that, the best way to bring change in the community is through education. He is dedicated to working with academic institutions which serve the underprivileged people in the community. His long term goal is to be a writer and analyst and probably run a publication which will help to challenge the engraving policies in his country and the African people at large.



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Amber Murrey-Ndewa
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: From the 'tragedy' to the 'magic' of mixture and everything in between : a historical analysis of constructions of black-white mixed racial identity in American film, 1911 to 2011

Amber Murrey-Ndewa is a poet, an activist and an ethnographer. She received her B.A. in Anthropology and Sociology from College of Idaho in 2008. Her research interest is visual art’s influence on political and social identity formation in West and Central Africa, specifically an exploration of visual art as a tool for reconciliatory, cross-ethnic dialogue. In Yaoundé, Cameroon, she worked with her academic director to co-develop a grassroots community center, The Center for Communal Skills Building (www.ccsbcameroon.com), which is committed to building a meaningful future for impoverished Cameroonian youth by providing quality educational courses and pre-professional opportunities. Amber is currently continuing her social activism on a domestic level, as an AmeriCorps*VISTA in rural Montana, helping to ensure abused and neglected Native American children receive legal representation. Following completion of her MA in Pan African Studies, Amber intends on pursuing a Ph.D. in anthropology with a focus on West and Central Africa.



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Chy'Na Nellon
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Re-casting our experiences: The dismalntling of African-American works of fiction withing the film industry as seen in the works of Ntozake Shange's for colored girls who have considered suicide when the rainbow is enuf and Alice Walker's the Color Purple

Chy'Na Nellon is originally from Little Rock, Ar. She did her undergraduate work at Lake Forest College in Lake Forest,IL. Chy'Na graduated in May of 2006 with a double major in Communications and Writing and a minor in African American Studies. In 2006 Chy'Na studied abroad with Semester at Sea, it was at this time that she discovered the importance history and how it effects everything, in particular culture. It is her objective to encourage a deeper intellectual desire of black historical culture in the black community. She also has interest in the ties of culture and history across cultural lines as it pertains to intercultural relations. After finishing her Master's she intends to pursue her PhD. ________________________________________



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Charmane Perry
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Preventing "Bahaiti" : controlling the Haitian "problem" through legislative and social exclusion in the Bahamas

Charmane Perry was born in Silver Spring, Maryland but raised in Philadelphia, PA. She spent her formative years at Girard College which had an extreme impact on her outlook and character. Charmane is a recent graduate of Temple University receiving her bachelor’s degree in African American Studies. As an undergraduate at Temple, she had the chance to assist in the development of the Young Black Activist Forum (educating the youth about reparations during N’COBRA’s conference) as well as doing research related to dietary practices among Black Philadelphia residents. Although she is interested in many topics related to the African Diaspora experience, her primary research interests are Black sexuality and gender identity/socialization in the Black community. Upon completing her master’s in Pan African Studies, Charmane intends to do research, publish empirical and quality information, and tap into her creative side by writing and producing a documentary, as well as eventually pursuing a Ph.D. Charmane believes that success is limited only by your own imagination. Therefore, her aspirations are limitless.



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Enkeshi Thom
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Wretchedness in the land of many waters: Locating coastal flooding within the post-colonial political economy of Guyana

Enkeshi R. Thom was born and raised in Guyana, a Caribbean country located on the coast of South America. At the age of twelve she moved to Atlanta, Georgia, and has lived there since. Enkeshi completed her undergraduate studies at Agnes Scott College in Decatur, Georgia where she double majored in Africana Studies and Psychology. Her experiences at Agnes Scott College filled with both successes and challenges have allowed her to grow into a socially aware, thoughtful and motivated young woman. An active member of her campus community she filled many leadership positions including Judicial Board Representative for her class, Committee of Student Multicultural Organizations Representative and President of the African West Indian Student Association. Enkeshi’s research interests include but are not limited to the experiences of black women within the African Diaspora and cultures of urban centers throughout the Diaspora. Upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies, Enkeshi plans to pursue a PhD in Sociology and then go on to teach at the college level and work in the non-profit sector on women’s issues in developing nations.



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Dara Walker
2011 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Navigating untold stories: An oral history approach to understanding the life experiences of black Detroit high school student activists of the Black Power movement



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Alexandria Patrice Barabin
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Postcoloniality and subjectivity among black artist in canada.

Alexandria Patrice Barabin, a native of Los Angeles, CA, who attended historic Crenshaw High School. Subsequently, she graduated from California State University, Northridge where she received her B.A. in Pan African Studies with an emphasis on Art and Literature. Additionally, she served as the Pan African Studies Writing Laboratory Instructor and the editor of the Hip Hop Think Tank, a student-led academic publication dedicated to deconstructing the sociological issues impacting Black youth culture. Alexandria will continue to explore the sociological and cultural nuances of the African Diaspora, including the examination of social and art movements' impact on higher education. After completing her PhD, Alexandria plans to become a full-time educator and writer as she continues to support social justice activism amongst young people of the Diaspora.



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Remy Johnson
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: I-Self: Using rastafari 'deep'thought to develop a culturally responsive and comprehensive pan african history course for students of african descent in the united states.

Remy Johnson is from Atlanta, Georgia by way of Chicago, Illinois. He earned a BA degree in African World Studies at Fort Valley State University in Fort Valley, Georgia with a concentration in African Literatures/Languages. Mr. Johnson has attended lectures at Cheik Anta Diop University in Dakar, Senegal; University of Cape Town in Cape Town, Azania (South Africa); and the University of Zimbabwe in Harare, Zimbabwe while participating in an independent study/study abroad experience. Mr. Johnson's research interests extend to the unifying and liberating implications of land repossession on human development in the African world, and utilize history and literature to examine the affects of land displacement. Mr. Johnson plans to build centers of education designed to serve children of the African Diaspora. These educational centers will use an African centered curriculum as a means of fostering an African identity in the children of the African Diaspora. After SU, he plans to complete a Ph.D. in Pan African Studies, continue his professional writing career, teach, travel, develop a periodical to serve urban youth, and continue to build the nation.



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Cory J. LaFevers
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: The sounds of blackness in brazil: Musical affordance, regional identity, and activism in recife's black movements

Cory J. LaFevers received a BA in History with high honors from the University of Houston in May, 2008. His Senior Honors Thesis, entitled The Sound of Revolution: Radio Free Dixie, Robert F. Williams, and Music as Protest and Propaganda, investigates how activists Robert and Mabel Williams utilized music and radio as a vehicle for protest to contribute to the black liberation struggle in the United States while they were in exile in Cuba. Cory¿s research interests include Afro-Diasporic Music, Protest and Social Movements; Afro-Latino / Afro-Brazilian Consciousness Movements; Race, Identity, and Human Rights the Americas; Relationships, connections, and intersections between the United States and Latin America/Caribbean; as well as Activist Scholarship, Ethnography, and Interdisciplinary methods, including: Ethnomusicology, Music-Sociology; Socio-cultural and Historical Anthropology, and Cultural Studies. As a masters student in Pan African Studies at Syracuse University, Cory also served as a 2009-2010 Graduate Student Representative for the Program on Latin American and Caribbean (PLACA) of the Maxwell School and as a Teaching Assistant for Prof. Bill Cole. Cory¿s Master¿s Thesis, The Sound of Blackness in Brazil: Musical Affordance, Regional Identity, and Activism in Recife¿s Black Movements, passed with Distinction and received a 2010 Master¿s Prize from the College of Arts and Sciences. Cory is currently pursuing further graduate studies in Ethnomusicology at the University of Texas at Austin.



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David Mwambari
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Inventing ethnicity: The malleability of identity in rwanda

David Mwambari is from Rwanda. He is currently a doctoral candidate in History at the School of Historical and European Studies at La Trobe University-Melbourne, Australia. He is also a Visiting Research Associate at the African Leadership Centre, King's College London since 2012. His research interests include; Youth, Memory in post-conflict countries and Security, indigenous Peacebuilding initiatives, as well as African Youth, Reconciliation and Development. Mwambari has a diploma in Business Administration (Runder College-Nairobi), B.A and MA in International Relations (both from United States International University-Nairobi) and M.A Pan African Studies from Syracuse University, New York-USA). Other professional training include: Certificate in Mediation from IIMCR/University of Cape Town, S.A/ Arcade University-USA, Preparing Future Faculty program-Syracuse University-USA, Reconciliation and Christianity-Great Lakes Initiative Leadership/Duke Divinity School, USA. He has taught at Shawnee State University- OH as a visiting assistant professor, a Teaching Assistant at Syracuse University-NY as well as United States International University-Nairobi and Tutor at La Trobe University-Melbourne. He has given lectures and presented and published scholarly work at academic institutions internationally. Mwambari has worked on peacebuilding initiatives in communities in Burundi, Democratic Republic of Congo, Kenya, North-Uganda and Rwanda. He has also worked with Somali, Burundian, Liberian, Sudanese refugee youth in New York and Melbourne. Mwambari is also the visionary behind www.sanejo.org a youth-led organization whose mission is to promote education in post-conflict countries



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Halycon Sealey-Westmass
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Challenges of anglophone caribbean feminism: Assessments of socio-cultural relevance

Halycon Sealey-Westmass is from Guyana, a Caribbean country located on the coast of the South America. She lived most of her life, worked and did her undergraduate studies in Guyana. She received a Diploma from the Burrowes School of Arts in 1997 and a BFA (Bachelor in Fine Arts) from the University of Guyana in 2001. In both institutions, she majored in painting and minored in fabric design. Halycon believes the conceptualization of deep artistic expressions is informed and dependant upon a sound knowledge of diaspora history. In this context, art functions as history in the visual form. Halycon¿s research interest is based on tracing connections, incorporating similarities and differences, of the African people¿s historical experience in the diaspora as it relates to the story of their art work.



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Anita Simmons
2010 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Sexual Violence: Access Denied. Studies in South Africa and Chicago

Anita Simmons was born and raised in the Henry Horner Project Homes located on the Near West side of Chicago. She is a recent graduate of Columbia College Chicago where she received her BA in Cultural Studies and a Minor in Black World Studies. Anita's academic research interests include, but are not limited to Women and Gender Studies, Music, Art, and Literature throughout the African Diaspora, Black Feminist Theory and Black social, cultural and political movements. Within these broad categories of interest, she is specifically interested in the social, cultural, historical, and political formations that exist within each field. Throughout the African Diaspora, Anita is interested in the ways that race, class and gender intersect to create complex, non-traditional ways of analyzing, critiquing, and appreciating facets of the African Diaspora that are rarely explored. The possibilities for Anita's future are endless. She maintains that where ever her spirit leads her is where her heart, body, and mind will follow.



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Adnan Ajsic
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Pan African language policy in an age of globalization : an African Lingua franca for all?

Adnan Ajsic began his academic career in 1998 at his home town University of Tuzla, Bosnia-Herzegovina, as a student of English and American literature. Between 1996 and 2004 he worked as a Bosnian-to-English translator with the US Army in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the United Nation's International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in The Hague, the Netherlands. Currently, Adnan is finishing an M.A. program in English and American Studies (Anglistik und Amerikanistik) at the Karl-Franzens Universität in Graz, Austria. Adnan speaks Bosnian, English, and German, and is learning Kiswahili. His research interests include ethnic literatures in English, translation theory, and progressive language policy in postcolonial societies. Adnan hopes to move on to a PhD. program in political science and employ lessons from the Black experience in fighting discrimination in the post-conflict Bosnian society. May 2009 Graduate. Click Here for thesis information. Update: PhD Program: English (Applied Linguistics) Northern Arizona University - (starting fall 2010)



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Asha Best
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Undesirable immigrants: Migrant as subject and agent in the works of Edwidge Danticat

Asha Sarika Best, though she is a native of Brooklyn, New York, Asha spent many of her formative years living on the outskirts of Boston. After a brief stint at Spelman College, she moved to Los Angeles to attend the University of Southern California. In 2005, Asha earned her Bachelor's degree in Comparative Literature. Asha is particularly interested in studying the Diaspora in the Caribbean and South America.



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Paul Burgman
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Negro como yo (black like me) : Constructions of blackness in Venezuelan social movement organizations

Paul Burgman is a graduate from The University of Houston majoring in Literature and minoring in African American Studies. In Spring of 2005 he was recognized for his academic success by being placed on The University of Houston's Dean's List. In 2006 he was a Dr. Kwame Nkrumah International Study Scholar as well as receiving the Office of International Studies Scholarship for studying abroad. In 2007 he was a founding member and first Vice-President of the Ankh Maat Wedjau Honor Society for African American Studies at The University of Houston and, in addition to his on campus accomplishments he was also inducted into the National Council of Black Studies Honor Society. In March of 2007 he was also awarded the Bardoli Global Fellowship which comprised of 100 student scholars in the Houston area. His area of study includes Africana literature and theatre



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Ingrid M. Butler
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Amongst Mardi Gras beads and holy rosaries : Exploring how Black lesbians negotiate space and sexuality in New Orleans

Hailing from Franklin, Louisiana, is Ingrid M. Butler. She is an alumni of Syracuse University (Entering Class of 2007), where she earned a dual bachelors degree in Psychology and African American Studies. Being well-versed on the challenging and supportive nature of the AAS department, she decided to pursue the MA in Pan-African studies. Currently, her work is centered on the relationship between place and sexual identity construction/behavior. Upon completing her master's degree, she would like to continue her research



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Stephanie Dickerson
2009 graduate, PAS program
The mask of cool: A historical and critical analysis of "masking" as a significant behavior utilized by African American males as reflected in history and literature



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Marcus Hill
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Sex work in Washington, D.C. : Black female sexuality and Black women¿s labor

Marcus Hill is from the historic Capitol Hill region of the city of Washington, DC (Not the suburban area of southern Maryland or northern Virginia). Marcus completed his undergraduate studies at Syracuse University where he received a BA in English and Textual Studies. His research interests are the roles Black women played in creating an entire culture that caters, centers, and revolve around their hair. Marcus hopes to show that this important popular culture aspect of Black women is evidence of how both the Pan-African movement is moving forward and simultaneously moving back. Marcus hopes to one day write a collection of books on Black popular culture and their significance to the Pan-African movement, from California low riders to Screw music in Houston, Texas. May 2009 Graduate.



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Zakiya A. Lasley
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Bifurcated Existences: Christian Evangelicalism and Black LGBT communities

Zakiya A. Lasley is a native of the Washington D.C. area. She has just recently completed her undergraduate degree from Hamilton College in Clinton N.Y. where she received a B.A. in Women's Studies, and a B.A. in Africana Studies in which she received honors. Zakiya looks forward to working in the areas of Black Feminist Thought and the use of non violent resistance in response to oppressive systems throughout the Black Diaspora. Upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies, Zakiya plans to apply to Law School where she in turn will use her degrees to work in the arena of conflict



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Jessica Ann Mitchell
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Invisible women melting : Connecting climate change and women of African descent through African orature

Jessica Ann Mitchell was raised in Milledgeville, GA. She completed her undergraduate work at Fort Valley State University where she majored in African World Studies with a Pre-Law Concentration. J.A.M. graduated Suma Cum Laude from Fort Valley State University in May 2007. Jessica (JAM-THE-LBG) is an award winning spoken word artist and actress that strives to educate and uplift humanity through her works. She has received numerous recognition and awards. Recently, she was awarded a Superior rating at the National Association of Dramatics and Speech Arts 2007 Conference in the category of Dramatic Monologue. She was awarded 3rd place in the international Citizens for Global Solutions 2006 Virtual Poetry Slam Contest. She has also been the featured spoken word artist for numerous events and conferences. One such event was the Americans for Informed Democracy¿s Darfur, the International Criminal Court, and Beyond: A Summit for Young Global Leaders. After completing her MA in Pan African studies, J.A.M. plans to publish her first collection of poetry and her second spoken word CD. She hopes to use spoken word as an avenue to spread a global message of urgency and peace. May 2009 Graduate.



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Ryan Travis Smith-Jones
2009 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: June 16 (a one-man play) : Using dramatic text to explore how low-income African-American men become non-participatory fathers

Ryan Travis Smith-Jones is from Camden, New Jersey by way of Stone Mountain, Georgia. Receiving a B.A. degree from Fort Valley State University in May 2007, Ryan graduated Summa Cum Laude majoring in African World Studies with a concentration in Pre-Law and a minor in Sociology. His research interests include examining the impact people of African descent had on Theatre Arts, and analyzing how they are depicted throughout the Arts. Ryan is the Co-Founder of Conscious Quest Productions, through which he has directed 7 productions, one of which has received national recognition at the 2007 National Association of Dramatic and Speech Arts Annual Conference. He notes that theatre has been used by people of African descent as an instrument to amplify their political, social, and spiritual voice: Ryan strives to continue in this legacy as a creative artist. Upon completion of his MA degree, Ryan plans to pursue a Ph.D. in Theatre Arts. May 2009 Graduate.



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Anne Abaho
2008 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: From 6 years to 100 : Examining post-traumatic stress disorders among former child soldiers

Anne Abaho was born in Uganda. She completed her primary and high school education in Uganda. She completed her undergraduate from United States International University in Kenya. She studied International Relations and Journalism at Undergraduate. Anne is mainly interested in issues concerning the plight of children and women in war torn areas. Anne has written articles in New Vision and Monitor (both papers in Uganda) on issues regarding human rights and the rule of law, child soldiers and border security among others. She also completed a research project on ¿Human Rights and Internal Armed Conflict: Child Soldiers in Sub Saharan Africa¿ as part of her undergraduate study. Anne is currently enrolled at Syracuse University for masters in Pan African Studies. May 2008 Graduate



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Lillian Baker
2008 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: The effects of perceived racism on Black women's health: Our voices, our health, our strategies

Lillian Baker is a May 2005 graduate of Temple University where she completed a Bachelors of Arts degree in Psychology and African American Studies. Her academic performance earned her recognition on Temple’s Dean’s List and the National Dean’s List. She received a Minority International Research Training Fellowship through the National Institute of Health and the University of Pennsylvania’s medical school. Baker’s research interests lie primarily in the health issues that affect people of African descent across the globe. Past research includes exploring mental health taboos that prevent African American residents of Philadelphia from seeking treatment, and the psychosocial effects of Sickle Cell Disease on patients and families in Kumasi, Ghana, West Africa. Upon completing the MA degree in Pan African Studies Syracuse University, Baker went to law school at the University of Houston Law Center where she earned her JD in May 2013. Baker plans to work at a nongovernmental organization in Africa that is committed to ending the health crisis and improving daily living conditions that many Africans face.(LinkedIN: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/lillian-baker/9/83b/578)



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Pierce Freelon
2008 graduate, PAS program
Sankofa: Pan-African migrations in Hip-Hop music and culture

Pierce Freelon was born and raised in Durham, North Carolina. He did his undergraduate work at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where he majored in African and African American Studies. Pierce received his BA degree in African and African American Studies with distinction and highest honors from the University of North Carolina in May of 2006. His research interests include music and education in the African Diaspora and ways in which Hip-Hop can be integrated into the classroom. Pierce is an emcee in the Hip-Hop group, Language Arts (languageartsmusic.com) and the founder of a black cultural website called Blackademics (blackademics.org). Upon completing his MA degree in Pan African Studies, Pierce moved back home to North Carolina. Currently, he teaches in the Departments of Music and African and Afro-American Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. In addition, he is president of Beat Making Lab, a new PBS Digital Studios series featuring young musicians from around the world; we build music studios in international cultural centers and train youth in the art of beat making: www.beatmakinglab.com (LinkedIN: http://www.linkedin.com/pub/pierce-freelon/22/3a2/61a)



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Michael Orwa
2008 graduate, PAS program

Orwa is from Nakuru, in Kenya’s Rift Valley province. He took his undergraduate studies at Kenyatta University in Nairobi from where he took courses in two departments thus: 1. History, Archeology & Political Studies, and 2. Kiswahili & African Languages He graduated with a Bachelor of Education (Hons) degree in July 2006. Orwa has a great interest in the African agenda particularly the politics and economics of the continent, and believes that it is time that a new generation of leaders emerged to redirect the continent away from the destructive paths of pre-independence hangover that has perpetuated sustained gerontocratic regimes. These leaders he feels must be informed by knowledge and a genuine desire to make a positive difference. An MA in Pan African Studies will enable him concretize his ideas, and give his intended African Futurist Movement a clearer vision devoid o The choice of his Doctorate degree, his says, must be informed and firmly founded upon the Pan African dream. In this regard, Public Policy is a doctoral consideration. Over and above all, and in addition to his innate desire to teach Pan Africanism, Orwa intends to see to the establishment of an international Pan African Institute in Nairobi to, among other things: (a) Coordinate Pan Africanist and related initiatives in continental Africa (b) Host the global Pan African community and scholars for research and seminars (c) Eventually see to the introduction of Pan African studies as an authoritative area of scholarship in institutions of higher learning To all these aspirations Orwa says: So help me God.



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Mathias Sajovitz
2008 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: The African diaspora in the Austrian political economy: A Marxist analysis



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Adam Carpinelli
2007 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: Fighting "modern slavery" securing land rights for the Saramaka people of Suriname. 2007

http://summit.syr.edu/cgi-bin/Pwebrecon.cgi?BBID=2576086



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Cynthia Dorsey
2007 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: L¿Africain Saccharin¿ Ballad : for the African whose journey led to Paris-the shared experience of the African in Paris. 2007

Cynthia L. Dorsey is from Washington, DC. She did her undergraduate work at Columbia College in Chicago where she majored in Acting. Cynthia received her BA degree in Acting with honors from Columbia in June 2005. Her research interests are blacks roles in the Arts throughout the Diaspora, and how the arts will be the driving force of the Pan African Movement for this generation. Cynthia hopes to start a children's theater company in Africa. She believes that theater is a healer and can heal the many years of oppression of black peoples globally. Upon completion of her MA degree in Pan African Studies, Cynthia plans to focus on Acting full time and get her PhD in Theater. She hopes to one day teach acting at Julliard.

http://soulflytheatresociety.com/the_soulfly_team



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Fumilayo Showers
2007 graduate, PAS program
Thesis Title: No longer invisible : African immigrant women in the United States labor force

Fumilayo Showers is enrolled in the doctoral program in Sociology at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University. Her research interests center on globalization, labor, gender and migration. Her current research looks at the incorporation of West African immigrant women workers in the U.S labor market, focusing on the Washington D.C metropolitan area. In her work Fumi explores the structural linkages between U.S immigration and labor policies, globalization, race, gender and transnational migration. Fumi holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in International Relations from Agnes Scott College in Decatur GA, and Master¿s degrees in Pan African Studies and Sociology from Syracuse University.



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Melissa Y. Watts
2007 graduate, PAS program

Melissa Watts is a recent graduate of Syracuse University's (SU) groundbreaking Masters of Pan African Studies program. After earning her MA degree from SU, Melissa continued to focus on the underpinnings of her thesis, Stand Tall: Introducing the Kati Jamii Model and Reclaiming African Americans Educative Heritage. As a proud alum, Melissa is committed to working within Black Communities for self reliance and cultural resilience. Near and dear to her heart are Melissa's husband and two children, whom push her and keep her grounded. Most recently, Melissa has been honored with the privilege of joining the Board of Trustees of Khepera Charter School, an African Centered Charter School in Philadelphia, PA. Melissa is the Director of the Foster Parenting Program at a leading local non-profit organization that focuses on children traumatized by abuse and neglect. In her free time, she is the proud Secretary of the Wazuri Parents Council at Khepera Charter School, volunteers at Kiddie Carriage, an ever expanding child educational facility and maintains close ties to a local entrepreneur empowering Black communities, Larry Farmbry & Associates. Melissa continues to strive for greatness in alliance with our ancestors while focusing on the incredible power of well educated children.



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Robert Webb aka Sundiata Salaam
2007 graduate, PAS program
The spirit within: Spirituality and resistance : a case study of Mekatilili and the Giriama