What We Don’t Know Can Hurt Us: What We Talk About Can Save Us

Third NJ 2017 Statewide Symposium on African American History Draws Educators, Museum Professionals, Historic Sites and Community & Faith Leaders to Grounds for Sculpture in Growing Movement for Change.

Hamilton, New Jersey—November 15, 2017— On Wednesday, November 1st, 2017, the Grounds For Sculpture hosted the third statewide symposium of its kind, “Presenting and Discussing Difficult Topics in African American History,” programming designed to inspire conversation as well as provide information, resources and a regularly scheduled networking forum.

Left: Dr. Linda Caldwell-Epps, President and CEO of 1804 Consultants  Right: Dr. Tabitha McKinley,  state coordinator for the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) for the New Jersey Department of Education.

Dr. McKinley presented alarming statistics to the attentive audience. For instance, in one 2014 statistic, 64% of 8th graders did not that Jim Crow referred to laws that enforced racial segregation.

One slide in Dr. McKinley’s presentation shows the stark reality of segregation and institutionalized racism in America’s recent past.

“Our symposia have served to seek answers through exploring our history and culture to make for a more harmonious and productive today and tomorrow,” asserted moderator Dr. Linda Caldwell-Epps.

Educator and Actress, Ivey Avery appears as Harriet Tubman. With a total of over 35 years in education, Avery directed the Drama Club at Harrison Elementary School and then at Columbus Elementary School for the Trenton Public School District.

The third statewide symposium of its kind, “Presenting and Discussing Difficult Topics in African American History,” programming designed to inspire conversation as well as provide information, resources and a regularly scheduled networking forum. The event was organized by a partnership among the Grounds For Sculpture, the New Jersey Historical Society, the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, and the 1719 William Trent House.

Dr. Cassandra Jackson is currently Scholar-in-Residence at the Grounds for Sculpture.

Heather Brady, Director of Education at the Grounds for Sculpture, talks about the the current Grounds for Sculpture exhibit, “Joyce J. Scott: Harriet Tubman and Other Truths”

Educator and Actress, Ivey Avery appears as Harriet Tubman. With a total of over 35 years in education, Avery directed the Drama Club at Harrison Elementary School and then at Columbus Elementary School for the Trenton Public School District.

The third statewide symposium of its kind, “Presenting and Discussing Difficult Topics in African American History,” programming designed to inspire conversation as well as provide information, resources and a regularly scheduled networking forum. The event was organized by a partnership among the Grounds For Sculpture, the New Jersey Historical Society, the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, and the 1719 William Trent House.

Dr. Cassandra Jackson is currently Scholar-in-Residence at the Grounds for Sculpture.

Heather Brady, Director of Education at the Grounds for Sculpture, talks about the the current Grounds for Sculpture exhibit, “Joyce J. Scott: Harriet Tubman and Other Truths”

The all-day event, organized by a partnership among the Grounds For Sculpture, the New Jersey Historical Society, the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, and the 1719 William Trent House.

Beverly Mills, coauthor of the forthcoming, If These Stones Could Talk (Wild River Books) and Board Member of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM).

Elaine Buck, coauthor of the forthcoming, If These Stones Could Talk (Wild River Books) and Board Member of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM).

Dr. Rosetta Treece has been an educator for 15 years and currently is the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Hopewell Valley Regional Public Schools in Pennington New Jersey.

The all-day event, organized by a partnership among the Grounds For Sculpture, the New Jersey Historical Society, the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, and the 1719 William Trent House.

Beverly Mills, coauthor of the forthcoming, If These Stones Could Talk (Wild River Books) and Board Member of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM).

Elaine Buck, coauthor of the forthcoming, If These Stones Could Talk (Wild River Books) and Board Member of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM).

Dr. Rosetta Treece has been an educator for 15 years and currently is the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Hopewell Valley Regional Public Schools in Pennington New Jersey.

Joyce J. Scott, Shhhhh!, 2012, Nigerian wooden object, plastic & glass beads, thread, drawing, and fabric, 35 x 20 x 20 inches, Collection of the Contemporary Art Society of the Tucson Museum of Art

“Museums and cultural institutions have the potential to serve as bridges within our communities. Art can also prompt challenging conversations that can help move us forward. Beyond its physical beauty and technical mastery, the current Joyce J. Scott: Harriet Tubman and Other Truths exhibition gives voice to many difficult truths,” says Gary Garrido Schneider, Executive Director of Grounds For Sculpture, “and in doing so, provides the opportunity for genuine self-reflection.”

Joyce J. Scott, Shhhhh!, 2012, Nigerian wooden object, plastic & glass beads, thread, drawing, and fabric, 35 x 20 x 20 inches, Collection of the Contemporary Art Society of the Tucson Museum of Art

“Museums and cultural institutions have the potential to serve as bridges within our communities. Art can also prompt challenging conversations that can help move us forward. Beyond its physical beauty and technical mastery, the current Joyce J. Scott: Harriet Tubman and Other Truths exhibition gives voice to many difficult truths,” says Gary Garrido Schneider, Executive Director of Grounds For Sculpture, “and in doing so, provides the opportunity for genuine self-reflection.”