Black and Gold Scholarship Gala
DENISHA MCKNIGHT | 11/28/2016, 10:46 a.m.
The Dallas Examiner
Leadership, mentorship and brotherhood play an essential role in the growth and development of African American communities. The Alpha Sigma Lambda chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. held their annual C.C. Russeau Black and Gold Scholarship Gala at the Dallas Sheraton Hotel, Oct. 22, in honor of the men who exhibit these essential elements in the DFW Metroplex.
“The gala is to primarily recognize the programs we are doing and the people in the community who are leaders and provide services to the community,” said Reginald Bibb, Alpha Merit Group chairman. “It’s our way of giving back to the community.”
The event garnered over 315 attendees and helped support scholarships given to deserving young high school senior boys who are a part of the Alpha Merit Group mentorship program, which serves 45 males between ages 10 to 18 throughout the Metroplex, according to Bibb.
Alpha Merit determined their recipients through a scoring system based on the boys participating in the group’s sessions twice a month, their ability to get their parents involved in advertising and ticket sales, and their final grades. Participants also had to write a 2,000-word essay, with winners selected by Alpha Merit board members to win the scholarship.
The highest qualifier was deemed “Beau of the Year” and received the most in scholarship funding from grants provided and named after Alphi Phi Alpha frat members.
That honor was bestowed upon Diego Jones, who received $2,500 from the A. Maceo Smith Scholarship Fund, to go towards his academic journey at Kentucky State University next year.
Saivion McCauley was rewarded $2,250 from the Ernest Wallace Scholarship fund and will be attending Southwestern Oklahoma State University.
Christian Bailey received $1,125 in funds from the A.L. Turner Academic Scholarship and will be attending Prairie View A&M University.
Ben Jalloh was the recipient of William Toles Educational Scholarship, and he was rewarded $2,000 towards his University of North Texas tuition fees.
Chase-Weathersby Scholarship fund awarded Errick Hamilton $1,125 to support his college career at Texas Southern University.
Cameron Lee is the recipient of the Brother Heywood Endowment Scholarship and was awarded $1,000 to support his studies at Langston University in Oklahoma.
David Brown received $1,500 from the Robert Prince scholarship fund, and he will be attending Cedar Valley Community College.
The gala also awarded other local groups and fraternity brothers for their outstanding work in the community. Forest Jackson received the “Brother of the Year” award for his contribution as a long-time Alpha frat brother. Akssan Haqq was given the “Neophyte of the Year” award for his huge contribution to the fraternity as a new member.
The annual event’s biggest award, the “Humanitarian Award,” was given to the Dallas Links and the Trinity Links of the tri-cities organizations, one of the oldest and largest nonprofit volunteer groups in the United States, for providing services in health awareness and educating the youth in multiple areas such as math, science, and technology.
Bibb said the group hopes to provide more scholarships for young Black males in their programs and get more people to be involved in their galas in the future.
“The brothers are pretty good at getting the word out,” he stated. “We know we can do more to get the people here. We just need to do better with getting the word out.”