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Conference to focus on increasing minority males attending college


The focus of previous GMS Male Initiative Bridge Builders Forums (shown above) has been to get more minority males to graduate from college.

  • September 15, 2011

The growing numbers of African American, Native American, Asian Pacific Islanders and Latino males who drop out of high school and do not attend college is the focus of a one-day conference Saturday, Nov. 19 in the New University Union on the Hayward Campus of California State University, East Bay, 25800 Carlos Bee Blvd.

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program, established with a $1 billion grant from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, is sponsoring the conference - The GMS Male Initiative Bridge Builders Forum - as part of a nationwide initiative.

Registration for this fourth annual event begins at 8:30 a.m., with workshops and various breakout sessions taking place between 9:30 a.m. and 2:00 p.m.  Registration is required and can be completed online at

"We'll have empowering workshops for students, their families, and the community, including scholarship information from the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, and informative materials about college admissions and financial aid available," said Diana Balgas, executive director of retention services for Cal State East Bay.

"Male students in Eighth through 12th grades - along with their families - are encouraged to participate in the forum. Educational directors and counselors from schools, churches, and community organizations are invited."

The conference will provide attendees with a free continental breakfast and lunch.

The Male Initiative Bridge Builders Forum is sponsored through a partnership between the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, the Hispanic Scholarship Fund, CSUEB, AIGC Scholars, UNCF and APIASF. Additional information is available through the Hispanic Scholarship Fund at (415) 808-2347.

The Gates Millennium Scholars Bridge Builders Male Forum is an educational and interactive event designed to provide young African American, Native American, Asian Pacific Islanders and Latino males with the tools and motivation to succeed in high school and advance to college. Although this is a male initiative, admission is open to anyone in the specified grade grouping.

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