Why Not Black Males?

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Building off the work of Teachers College, Columbia University's Racial Literacy Lecture Series, Dean’s Forums feature candid conversations on race, equity & education at the School of Education.

Date & Time:

Wednesday, December 4, 2019
5:30 PM - 7:00 PM




University of St. Thomas - Minneapolis Campus
Thornton Auditorium (TMH 260)
1000 LaSalle Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55403

"Why Not Black Males?"

It is imperative to understand our own beliefs and how they form the bases of our views, engagement and education of Black Males. Research indicates that when students and educators have a growth mindset, they understand that intelligence can be developed. We want to ensure that the goal is not to "fix" Black Males because they are not broken; it’s the system that is broken and needs to be fixed. Come with an open ear and mind to listen how I am critically questioning the current educational system and working to create a new one on behalf of and to benefit Black Males!

About the Speaker


Michael V. Walker brings a career focus on youth development and assisting black youth to achieve success. He earned his undergraduate degree in physical education from Southwest Minnesota State University and his master’s degree in counseling from the University of Wisconsin – River Falls as well as his Administrative and Superintendent License from St. Cloud State. He is currently pursuing his PhD at the University of Minnesota in Organizational Leadership, Policy, and Development. From 1998 to 2006, Walker served as Community Outreach, Program and Youth Development Director at the YMCA of Minneapolis and Greater St. Paul, where he developed programs for social, academic, athletic and employment skills for youth and served as the coordinator of the Black Achievers program, an academic achievement and career development initiative for middle school and high school youth. Walker worked as a career and college center coordinator for AchieveMpls at Roosevelt High School from 2006 to 2009, before serving Minneapolis Public Schools as Roosevelt’s dean of students from 2009 to 2011, and then moved into the role of assistant principal from 2011 to 2014. He has taken on being the Director for the Office of Black Male Student Achievement for the past three years, where his sole responsibility is changing academic outcomes for Black Males who attend Minneapolis Public Schools. He is the founder and CEO of Critical Questioning Consulting where he has worked with local districts and across the country to provide a framework and professional development workshops designed for supporting Black Males. Being a 2017 Bush Fellow recipient has allowed him to further his leadership and expertise in this area. Walker is an unapologetic advocate for Black Males and works toward reducing the belief gap in the area’s schools. Walker is a product of Minneapolis Public Schools. Walker leaves us with this critical question to the educational system: "Why have we been trying to solve a non-academic issue with an academic solution?"

All programs offered by the University of St. Thomas shall be readily accessible to individuals with disabilities. For details, call (651) 962-6315.