The Males for Alabama Education (M.AL.E.) Initiative, under the leadership of Dr. Lena Walton, dean of the College of Education, Humanities and Behavioral Sciences, hosted a virtual seminar entitled “Navigating the Professional World as a Minority Male.”
Alabama A&M University President Andrew Hugine, Jr., served as the first speaker for the Initiative’s monthly seminar, which began in January.
Hugine reminded attendees that aspiring male teachers “hold in their hands the ability to change the world,” adding that male teachers have an especially important role to play in classrooms. The President went on to inform the M.AL.E. scholars about the unprecedented challenges they will be face on their journey toward becoming teachers. One challenge, he stressed, is the ongoing issue of racism that continues to plague the American landscape. However, he countered that now is not a time to become bitter, but rather to rise, overcome the challenges, and pursue excellence.
Dr. Hugine discussed principles formed by the acrostic “Leadership” to demonstrate the path male teachers should take in order to navigate the professional world. The following acrostic was used in his message to convey the importance of demonstrating effective leadership in the classroom and beyond:
L = Lead by example and become lifelong learners.
E = Empower others to do the work that needs to be done and to be successful.
A = Accountability is key. Be accountable for your actions, no matter the task at hand.
D = Demand high performance.
E = Encourage others as recognition is important for anyone who is being led.
R = Responsibility and respectfulness are important. To gain respect one must give respect.
S = Stay strategic and focused on objectives that need to be accomplished.
H = Humility and honorability are important characteristics to possess.
I = Integrity is doing the right thing whether someone is watching or not.
P = Passion and pride must be demonstrated in everything that is done.
Males for Alabama Education (M.AL.E.) Initiative hosts monthly seminars for program participants, faculty, students, and invited guests. M.AL.E. is a scholarship and mentoring program focused on the recruitment, retention, and preparation of minority males to become PK-12 teachers in Alabama’s public schools. The M.AL.E. Initiative provides tuition and other financial assistance for undergraduate and graduate students.
Persons interested in becoming a participant in the Males for Alabama Education program should e-mail M.AL.E. Program Coordinator, Dr. Larry Collier, at email@example.com for more information.