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The Osaze Osagie Memorial Lecture: A New Annual Signature Series on Global Black Communities and Mental Health

The Osaze Osagie Memorial Lecture: A New Annual Signature Series on Global Black Communities and Mental Health

Osaze Osagie Memorial Lecture

Sybrina Fulton, racial justice activist and mother of Trayvon Martin

March 20 will mark the fifth anniversary of the death of Osaze Osagie, a former Penn State student shot by local police during a mental health event. While mental health challenges occur among Black or African American people at about the same or less frequency than their white counterparts, racial disparities in health care and treatment, and encounters with law enforcement, affect the former far more severely. This state of affairs demands "people-first" policy solutions.

In honor of Osagie’s memory, and building on the accomplishments of Penn State's African Studies Global Virtual Forum, the Africana Research Center and the College of the Liberal Arts are launching a “Global Black Communities and Mental Health” series aimed at elevating attention to issues of mental health among Black communities across the African diaspora, fostering meaningful connections between scholarly research in the social and behavioral sciences and the humanities, and advancing everyday applications of this research for families, service providers, advocates and allies working to improve the quality of life in Black communities. 

The highlight of this series will be the inaugural Osaze Osagie Memorial Lecture, taking place Tuesday, March 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the Hintz Family Alumni Center at Penn State University Park. The lecture will feature a conversation with Sybrina Fulton, racial justice activist and mother of Trayvon Martin, a Black youth whose 2012 death in Sanford, Florida, helped spark the early #BlackLivesMatter movement. Savita Iyer-Ahrestani, senior editor of the PennStater magazine, will conduct this dialogue with Fulton. 

Both the lecture and the reception that follows are free and open to the public; however, because of limited seating, advance registration is required.

Penn State co-sponsors for the lecture include the Paul Robeson Cultural Center; Center for Social Change and Belonging; Division of Undergraduate Studies; College of Arts and Architecture; College of Agricultural Sciences; Smeal College of Business; Donald P. Bellisario College of Communications; College of Earth and Mineral Sciences; College of Education; College of Engineering; College of Health and Human Development; College of Information Sciences and Technology; College of Medicine; Ross and Carol Nese College of Nursing; Eberly College of Science; Schreyer Honors College; Penn State Dickinson Law and the Penn State Dickinson Law Antiracist Development Institute; Penn State Law and the School of International Affairs; The Graduate School; University Libraries; the Office of the Vice Provost for Educational Equity; and the Office of the Vice President for Commonwealth Campuses.

Sybrina Fulton, mother of Trayvon Martin, will present the inaugural Ozaze Osagie Memorial Lecture, on March 26, 2024.
Hintz Family Alumni Center

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