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Cornel West to Address Sold Out Crowd at OMA Unity Banquet

Dr. Cornel West, the Class of 1943 University Professor in the Center for African American Studies at Princeton University, will deliver the keynote address to a sold-out crowd at the fourth annual Unity Banquet and Scholarship Benefit on Friday, April 16.

More than 300 people will hear West present Bridging the Gaps: The Importance of Courageous Leadership at 7 p.m. in Duquesne University’s Power Center Ballroom. An additional 100 will watch a simulcast of West’s remarks in the Mary Pappert Lecture Hall in the Bayer Learning Center on campus. During his remarks, West, who is described as a champion for racial justice, will focus on ways to bridge gaps between different groups of people—with a special emphasis on race, class and generational challenges.

Sponsored by the Office of Multicultural Affairs (OMA), the Unity Banquet and Scholarship Benefit was established to build a sense of community on campus and to recognize a select group of students for their academic achievements and leadership skills, particularly in initiatives that promote unity.

West is the author of the renowned collection of essays, Race Matters, an analysis of racism in America and democracy. Included among his 19 other books are Brother West: Living and Loving Out LoudBeyond Eurocentrism and Multiculturalism, and Democracy Matters: Winning the Fight Against Imperialism. In addition, West’s commentary is featured weekly on The Tavis Smiley Show from Public Radio International.

He has taught philosophy, religion and African-American studies at numerous colleges and universities, including Union Theological Seminary, Yale University, the University of Paris and Harvard University. West was an influential force in developing the storyline for theMatrix movie trilogy, for which he has served as its official spokesperson and played a recurring role in the final two films. He is a magna cum laude graduate of Harvard and earned his Ph.D. in philosophy from Princeton.

Duquesne University

Founded in 1878, Duquesne is consistently ranked among the nation's top Catholic universities for its award-winning faculty and tradition of academic excellence. Duquesne, a campus of nearly 9,500 graduate and undergraduate students, has been nationally recognized for its academic programs, community service and commitment to sustainability. Follow Duquesne University on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.