AAMI Events

AAMI offers conferences and seminars, mentoring and modeling opportunities, and social engagement and personal development activities to participants. Past AAMI events have included:

  • Men of Distinction Seminar: “Exploring Pathways to Success and Social Action,” which featured distinguished faculty and staff Raheem Beyah, John-Paul Clarke, Baratunde Cola, Archie Ervin, Gary May, Keith Oden, Manu Platt, and Damon Williams 
  • Am I (Still) My Brother’s Keeper?: “New Conversation around an Old Paradigm,” which was co-facilitated by alumni Luqman Abdur-Rahman (APS Principal & Educator), The Honorable Andre Dickens (Atlanta City Council), Cedric Stallworth (Georgia Tech), Major General Ronald Johnson (Georgia Tech), and Ryan Stewart (2LiveStews)
  • Real Conversation with Black Women: “Can We Talk across Genders?,” which featured alumnae Kia Benion (Triage Consulting Group), Quirtina Crittenden (Triage Consulting Group), Erikka Mallet (Women in Technology and Women of the Year), and Jade Sims (Georgia Tech)
  • Broadening the African-American Footprint: “Moving Beyond Student to Corporate Leader,” which featured key corporate executives and representatives from AT&T, Georgia Transmission Corporation, General Electric, GTRI, Southwire, Sprint, and many more
  • Tackling the Mountain and the Vision: “Historic Team Building Five-Mile Mountain Climb and Skylift Ride”
  • Fearless Dialogue: Facilitated by Gregory Ellison II (Emory University)
  • Brother to Brother: Collaborative unity session with NPHC fraternity members

Conferences and Seminars

A major factor in African-American students' experiences at predominately white institutions are the creation/control of counter-cultural spaces and symbols. Counter-cultural spaces and symbols are photographs, buildings, publications, physical spaces, sculptures, plaques, walls, open displays, and artifacts that depict the presence, norms, beliefs, practices, and social behaviors of a particular group. Solórzano et. al. (2000) found that development of social and academic counter-cultural spaces in response to systemic barriers on and off campus provide autonomy, flexibility, and agency to a group that has been restricted and regulated by counter norms of a dominate culture. 

AAMI has established a vibrant academic environment through conferences and workshops that function as counter-cultural spaces, yet facilitate the rigor, problem-solving, and project team competency necessary to thrive at an institute of technology and in STEM-related careers.

Mentoring and Modeling

Due to the critical nature of mentoring in higher education, the disparities in faculty demographics, and the power dynamics of hierarchical relationships, the one-to-one mentoring model can create places of contestation and injustice for women and persons of color (Bell-Ellison and Dedrick, 2008). There is a growing emphasis throughout the literature on the development of mentoring networks, consortia, and cohorts, as opposed to single mentor-mentee relationships. The network and cohort model provide alternate ways of leveraging limited resources. Underrepresented groups tend to benefit from cooperative multiple-mentor relationships that attend to personal and emotional needs as well as academic needs (McGuire and Roger, 2003; Yun, 2007). However, Agnew et al (2008) warn that if left to a more organic social structure, mentoring networks – while creating stronger communities – can have socially isolating effects for students of color. Therefore, experts advise that mentoring networks be comprised of intentional cohorts and supported at interdepartmental and institutional levels.

AAMI strategically attends to these dynamics through mentoring and modeling initiatives.

Social Engagement and Personal Development

Studies have shown that abstract agendas only mask issues of diversity and inclusion. While our aim is to create an environment of inclusion for all, the integration of African-American males as leaders in an inclusive environment hinges on their ability to sustain their own self-efficacy and excellence of consciousness in engaging others. Consequently, we recognize that the academic and professional development of a person is connected to their social and community development.

AAMI attends to the holistic development of our participants inclusive of social and communal activities, such as community service, self-efficacy evaluation seminars, “fearless dialogue," teambuilding exercises, competitive gaming, need-base innovation competitions, and collective responses to communal issues.