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St. John Church Unleashed

Texas Metro News, The Dallas Morning News and St. John Church of Grand Prairie/Southlake will host the Virtual Summit Series 2020 for high school students and student athletes.

The Summit is a three-part virtual college awareness and recruitment event that will include live panel discussions on important topics surrounding Historically Black Colleges and Universities including, among other things, the success of these schools’ athletic programs in providing a the high percentage of African Americans athletes to the NFL, NBA and other professional sports.

The Summit opens at 1 pm, Saturday, August 15, with the virtual panel discussion HBCU or PWI: Which is Better for Your College Athletic Career? The opening event feature Dallas Mavericks Assistant Coach and Fayetteville State University alumnus Darrell Armstrong, Prairie View State University alumna and three-time SWAC champion women’s volleyball coach Jocelyn Adams, Grambling State University Athletic Director Dr. David Ponton and Howard University athletes Kailey Strozier, a track and field standout, and DaShawn Simon, a wide receiver for the Bison.

“I’m really excited for our church to bring this outstanding programming to North Texas students and student athletes so that they can make informed choices regarding their college athletic careers,” said the Rev. Elena Carraway Freeman, an assistant youth pastor at St. John.

“This is a rare opportunity for DFW-area students to hear directly from coaches and HBCU student athletes – and from our own Dallas Mavericks Coach Darrell Armstrong – about the unique and holistic strengths students might gain from matriculating at these historic institutions” she said. “We want the best for our kids – socially, emotionally, of course, spiritually. So, we want to encourage them to consider these schools.”


Saturday’s opening panel discussion comes in the wake of the #Black Lives Matter movement and an increasing number of African American student athletes, disenchanted with playing time, social environments and tense campus relations, announcing their transfers from predominantly white institutions to historically black colleges. 

Saturday’s panel discussion will be broadcast live across the St. John Church’s FaceBook platform ( and its YouTube channel.

Saturday’s event is free and open to all students and their families.

The 2020 Virtual HBCU Summit includes three panel discussions.The second panel convenes at 1 pm, Saturday, Aug. 29. Guests will discuss What’s Life Like on ‘The Yard’ of an HBCU? The final panel convenes at 1 pm Saturday, Sept. 12. Guest speakers in this group will discuss How Will I Pay for My HBCU Education? 

To register for Saturday’s event, click here.


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