MENtoring Conference: Exploring college success through HIStory

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In response to equity and achievement gaps in enrollment, persistence and graduation rates for college men - especially young men of color - this conference represents a collaborative movement that leverages MENtoring to empower Fresno State men (including students, staff, faculty, administrators, and non-male identifying allies) and ignite a spirit of true community, redefined purpose, and a collective resolve for reaching higher.   



Please click here to register for the conference. You can also copy and paste the following URL to your browser:

If accommodations are needed to participate in this event, please call (559)278-3052.


Terrell L. Strayhorn Ph.D
Acclaimed Education Expert & Professor 

Dr. Terrell Strayhorn

Dr. Terrell Strayhorn is Founding Chief Executive Officer of Do Good Work Educational Consulting, LLC. He also serves as Interim Vice President of Academic & Student Affairs and Professor of Urban Education at LeMoyne-Owen College in Memphis, TN. Previously, Strayhorn was on the faculty at The Ohio State University, where he served as Professor & Director of the Center for Higher Education Enterprise (CHEE).

An internationally-recognized student success scholar and “a foremost authority on issues of equity and diversity,” Strayhorn is the author of over 10 books and more than 200 book chapters, journal articles, and other scholarly publications. His most popular book, College Students’ Sense of Belonging: A Key to Educational Success, sold record copies nationally and its 2nd edition will debut September 2018. Strayhorn is lead editor of a forthcoming book on the future of HBCUs that charts a way forward for transforming Black colleges today. He has given hundreds of invited keynote lectures at more than 700 universities and conferences across the globe. He has had an abiding life-long commitment to equity, diversity, and social justice. Longtime civil rights leader and activist, Marian Wright Edelman, President of the Children’s Defense Fund, wrote in 2014: “Strayhorn [is] a brilliant, Black professor” whose research yields critical insights for addressing long-standing problems in education.

Known for using the hashtag #DoGoodWork on social media, Strayhorn was named one of the country’s top diversity scholars by Diverse: Issues in Higher Education in 2011, one of Business First’s “Top 40 under 40,” one of the “Top 20 to Know in Education,” and became the youngest full professor in Ohio State University’s history in 2014. He has been quoted in major news outlets including the Chronicle of Higher Education, Inside HigherEd, Huffington Post, and newspapers across the nation. He shares his expertise on a national level as Guest Board Member for the National Association of Campus Activities (NACA) and Immediate Past-Chair of AERA’s Research Focus on Black Education (RFBE).

Strayhorn received a bachelor’s degree (BA) from the University of Virginia (UVA), a masters degree (MEd) in educational policy from the Curry School of Education at UVA, and doctorate (PhD) in higher education from Virginia Tech. He is currently pursuing a graduate certificate in Biblical Studies from Fuller Theological Seminary. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Incorporated, several honor society’s including Phi Kappa Phi, and a proud native of Virginia Beach, Virginia.


Shamiel Gary
Former NFL Player | Entrepreneur | Mentor

Shamiel GaryBorn and raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Shamiel Gary lived his dream as a professional football player in the National Football League, but the road to the NFL wasn’t easy. Shamiel faced obstacles from every direction. It took hard work and perseverance to bring his 3rd-grade dream to life.

As a senior at Booker T. Washington High School, Shamiel had coaches who didn’t believe in him. After the state championship, he received his only football scholarship from the University of Wyoming. During his freshman season at Wyoming, he won the 5A State Championship and earned Freshman All-American.

At the end of his sophomore season, Shamiel transferred to Oklahoma State University to be closer to his family while his grandmother battled Alzheimer’s disease. In a single season, he went from being an All-American Safety to spending the 2011 season on the sidelines due to NCAA transfer rules.

In 2012, Shamiel hit the football field in full force. He started every game for the Cowboys, recording 72 tackles, 6 passes defended, 3 interceptions, and 1 forced fumble. As a senior, his pace continued, and the Cowboys placed 2nd in the Big 12 Conference.

After graduation in 2014, Shamiel entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent, signing with the New England Patriots. After separating his shoulder during the 2015 NFL pre-season with the Miami Dolphins, he was released on an injury settlement. He then found out his mother’s cancer had returned. It was this release, this moment filled with uncertainty, that just so happened to be God’s perfect timing. If Shamiel had not injured his shoulder, he would have still been in Miami. Instead, he got to spend every day and night in the hospital with his mother until she was able to get a second surgery.

Soon after this, Shamiel returned to Miami, Florida. For the first time in his life, his mother was able to watch her son play in an NFL game. After the season ended, Shamiel found himself in the same situation as before. He was again able to be with his mother, this time being her last days. Shamiel finished his football career with the Buffalo Bills.

Currently, Shamiel is pouring into the next generation through professional speaking and mentoring. He loves reading books and soaking up time at the bowling alley.


The Wake Up Experience

The Wake Up Experience is designed to empower, uplift, and inspire students through the healing power of music, self-discovery, and love, thus significantly impacting student success in life and the classroom.  Evan Bane and RYZ have carefully crafted songs with deep purpose and a high level of consciousness to enhance their unique style of facilitating self-discovery through music, storytelling and dynamic exercises.

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Men’s Conference Tentative Agenda & Timeline

8:30am - 8:45am Check-in & Continental Breakfast

8:45am - 8:55am Native Land Recognition

8:55am - 9:00am Welcome and Speaker Introduction (M.C. Troy Polintz)

9:00am - 9:50am Keynote Conversation (Terrell L. Strayhorn Ph.D)

9:50am - 10:00am Segue to Breakout sessions

10:00am - 10:50am Breakout session #1 (Rooms located in FFS Bldg.)

11:00am - 11:50am Breakout session #2 (Rooms located in FFS Bldg.)

12:00pm - 12:50pm Lunch and Guest Performance (The Wake Up Experience)

12:50pm - 1:00pm Speaker Introduction (M.C. Troy Polintz)

1:00pm - 1:50pm Keynote Conversation (Shamiel Gary)

1:50pm - 2:00pm Segue to Reflective Conversation (M.C. Troy Polintz)

2:00pm - 2:30pm Purpose, Community, and Reaching Higher (Panel Discussion)  

2:30pm - 2:45pm Closing Remarks (Dr. Frank Lamas)

2:45pm - 3:00pm Aztec Dancers (Performance)


Managing Your Money: Budgeting and Savings Strategies - Presented by Sonny J. Botello (Wells Fargo Wealth Management Private Banker)

College Life From the Male Point of View - Presented by STAO (Stand Together As One)

What's Wrong With the Friend Zone? - Presented by Steve Sanchez of the Student Health and Counseling Center

Calculating and Increasing Life Value - Presented by Marcus Banks-Bey (New York Life), and Renee Cromer (SupportNet Advisor)

Dressed for Success: Tips for Men Looking to Enhance Career Branding through Fashion - Presented by Sonya Marie (founder of College Girls Brand and student employee of the Career Development Center Clothing Closet) 

Changing Your Success Mindset - Presented by STAO (Stand Together As One)

Who Raised You?: An Experience in Discovering your Truth - Presented by Ryan "Ryz" Walker and Dr. Garrett "Evan Bane" Thompson of the Wake Up Experience

How to Become a Warrior - Presented by Dr. Kenneth Hansen

Understanding the Self-Concept and Assertiveness of Men - Presented by Jake Lorchueya and Doua Lor

Committed but not fully Committed - Presented by First Friendship Church Pastor Sean Battle (Masters in Theological Studies and Masters in Leadership) and moderated by Diamond Morehead, Korri Davis, and Giselle Velazquez

Stress and Mental Health for Men of Color - Presented by Dr. Roger Simpson

How Purpose and Community Have Impacted My Journey Before and After Becoming a Police Officer - Presented by Officer Justin Bell

My Story, My Knowledge, My Journey - Presented by Anthony Losongco, Gena Gong, Jenny Banh, and Doua Lor.


Lenses of LeadershipLenses of Leadership is a monthly leadership panel, which examines how our intersecting identities influences our approach to leadership. Check out faculty, staff, administrators, students, and community members share their leadership lessons from their personal experiences. Each month features a specific identity (race, gender, sexuality, ethnicity, etc.). This program is a partnership between the Center for Leadership, Cross Culture and Gender Center, and the Learning Center. Refreshments provided!

Upcoming Leadership Panel is scheduled for Thursday, February 21, 2019 @ Henry Madden Library 3212 (12:30pm - 1:30pm) and features a panel of faculty, staff, and student perspectives from within the African-American lens of leadership.

Leadership on Demand - The Woke Leader (featuring John Hunt and Sophie Karas) takes place on Tuesday, February 26th from 5pm-6pm in the Henry Madden Library 2134 and defines what it means to be "woke" and exerting a leadership influence that encompasses advocacy, equity and social justice matters. 


Learning Center Front Desk (559) 278-3052