The Black studies Center, the Black Community Resource Center (BCRC) the Quebec Board of Black Educators (QBBE), the Black Academic Scholarship Fund, as members of the Black Community Forum, are working together as partners to improve the employability of Blacks and to stop the Brain drain of Black graduates from Montreal and Quebec. The BSC has made significant contributions from its Charity Capital Fund in support of these organizations and this initiative. The sum total of funds donated to BCF member organization in 2017-2018 is $13 000. In addition, the BSC has spent a maximum to date of $18 000 on its Black community archives project carried out in collaboration with QBBE, BCRC, and BTW.
NEW Scholarships to Quebec Black Medical Association (QBMA).
The Black Studies Center has dedicated two scholarships renewable on an annual basis to be managed by the Quebec Black Medical Association (QBMA) and the Black Academic Scholarship Fund. These scholarships are awarded across the language divide of Quebec. The two scholarships consider the academic excellence and community engagement of Blacks and other visible minorities, and disenfranchised student competitors. Thus the scholarships are to support the organizations’ initiatives in their efforts to support excellence in the medical sciences, the general arts and social sciences disciplines, consistent with the spirit of the Black Community Forum principle of “Collaborative Unity.”
The QBMA Awards
The first of the two BSC Awards were presented by the QBMA at a special symposium and award ceremony at Université de Montréal Friday, Oct. 26th 5: 30-9: 00 pm. The Dean of the Faculty of medicine of UdeM was introduced by Dr Eduard Kouassi, President of the QBMA. The Dean’s welcoming address was well received. During the address, the University’s support for the QBMA was announced. Following the welcome, a guest speaker, Dr Ahmed Maherzi, delivered an inspirational presentation on Social responsibility in Medicine and Health Sciences, making the central point that the disciplines and the role of the University must be tailored to the cultures and needs of the communities they serve. Most importantly, he stated that the study and delivery of the services must engage and involve the participation of the peoples of those communities.
Following the question and answer period Dr Eduard Akoussi, president of the Quebec Black Medical Association, addressed the symposium and introduced the Awards Ceremony. Six scholarships were presented. The highest award for the evening highlighted the Legacy of Dr Elery Tucker, the founding father of the QBMA. The Black Studies Center award went to Kayala Lewis Thelusmon.
Ms Kayala Lewis Thelusmon is a student in the medical sciences (Macromolecular Structure and Functions plus protein purification). She has a passionate curiosity about the healing bridge between the medical sciences and the arts. To quote her: “ j’ai un amour pour les sciences de la vie et l’éducation. Surtout, je m’assure d’inclure autant qe possible des notions de la communauté africaine et de descendence africaine dans toute ce que j’entreprends.” This is what the General manager of the Black Theatre Workshop had to say about her work in the Black Canadian theatre culture scene; “ I was very impressed with her professionalism and the quality and care she puts into her tasks … She has been a great asset to our team during our most busy period.. we were very [appreciative] for her time.”
The evening was a great success with some 100 persons in attendance. The food was great and the social interaction vibrant.
Community Contact, Guest Reporter