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Berea Recieves a Lesson in Chivalry

What started out as a conversation turned into an insightful seminar, when a group of male students got together to discuss the treatment of women in today’s society, at a time when it’s needed the most.

Students enjoy food and skits at the seminar

At first the focus of the seminar was on the African American community, but as the young men researched the situation they realized that the mistreatment and misconception of women was a campus-wide problem. The men decided to put on a program to show their peers how women should be treated, thus “Treat Her Like a Lady” was born.

The format was a banquet style seminar focusing on the real life situations men and women face everyday. The hosts coupled compelling topics for table wide discussions with extemporaneous skits to produce an informative and completely interactive way to make a difference.

Skits communicated significant ideas to the audience, including the importance of being considerate to a woman, even through an action as small as opening a car door for her. After the enjoyable and informative skits, dinner was served and table-wide discussions were encouraged. The topic of the hour was, “Is chivalry dead?” Despite a few young men who responded, “What is chivalry?” the general consensus was that there are still gentlemen left in the world.

Of course the road to the final program was not a short one, and a great deal of planning, pitching and advertising went into making the program a success. After estimating the cost of the banquet, the next step was securing the funding. The group met with many campus organizations to pitch their idea and ask for their support.

In the end, the event was a hit. “‘Treat Her Like a Lady’ was a great success. I feel as if the outcome was very positive, and the intended message was received by students in attendance,” stated Brian Owens, the emcee for the event.

Sophomore Kareem Holden also helped organize the event. “I feel the event made a difference,” he said. “It gave men an awareness of what might be lacking in a relationship and that sometimes the little things that they do in a relationship mean just as much as the big things.”

Yet with every good event there are a fair number of obstacles, but the obstacles faced by the men of “Treat Her Like a Lady” were more like stepping stones to another production. “We had so many things we wanted to do,” said sophomore CeDarian Crawford. “The fact that we had to minimize it to two hours meant that we had to exclude peoples ideas. When Christian [Motley] and I went before Coalition, they told us they would like this to be an annual thing. We’ve even started planning for events happening two or three weeks from now.”

Other principal organizers for “Treat Her Like A Lady” included Tashia Bradley, director of the Black Cultural Center, with support from sophomores Jay Anthony Holbert, Pierre Armstrong, Hasan Tesfa, Eric Thompson, Charles Hilliard and Chris Miller-Hill, Junior David Foster and Freshman Olaseni Ajao, as well as others who promoted the project through word of mouth and personal endorsement.

For more information on future productions contact The Black Cultural Center (BCC) located in the Alumni Building on the Berea College Campus at (859) 985-3797.

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