WPU Hosts Academic Hip Hop Symposium, April 4-5; Keynote Speaker Dr. Marc Lamont Hill

March 6, 2019

Song Courtesy: p.a.t. junior

William Peace University has rescheduled its inaugural Hip Hop and Higher Education Symposium (#HipHopEdWPU) for April 4-5 following Hurricane Florence. The event will focus on public and academic conversations surrounding hip hop’s relationship to social justice and other issues, and will precede J. Cole’s inaugural Dreamville Festival in Dix Park on April 6. A keynote will be delivered on Friday by Dr. Marc Lamont Hill, former BET and HuffPost LIVE contributor and Professor of Media Studies and Urban Education at Temple University.

“The fact that WPU is taking so much initiative to get involved with relevant events within the city, such as Dreamville Fest, is something I’m confident will leave a long-lasting impact on its students and community.”

Ogden Payne, Forbes’ Media & Entertainment Columnist, Panelist at #HipHopEdWPU

The Hip Hop and Higher Education Symposium will feature more than 12 panels, sessions and other events led by local and national scholars, students, and community members discussing hip hop in terms of art, politics, gender, sexual identity, race, economics, violence, criminal justice, policing, social responsibility and activism, and our collective role in addressing each. The symposium especially aims to ask questions about how students and institutions of higher education play a part in these contexts.

“I wish my university put something like this hip hop symposium on while I was a student,” Payne said. “I’m incredibly honored to share a lineup with so many diverse and distinguished speakers.”

WPU is an official education partner of Dreamville Festival
WPU is an official education partner of Dreamville Festival, happening April 6th in Dix Park in downtown Raleigh, NC

In addition to Payne serving as a panelist and Dr. Hill as Keynote Speaker, other panelists and speakers include Sascha Stone Guttfreund of ScoreMore Shows, Donovan Livingston of Wake Forest University (Harvard graduate, Ph.D. candidate, poet, educator, and speaker), Cocoa Michelle Williams of Florida State University (award-winning poet and Ph.D. candidate), Dasan Ahanu (recipient of the Nasir Jones Harvard University Hip Hop Fellowship), and more.

In addition, WQOK (K97.5), the Triangle’s top station for hip hop and R&B will be DJing from the two-day symposium. Sodexo, WPU’s dining services partner and in industry leader in food and hospitality services, will serve as an official sponsor.

Registration for #HipHopEdWPU is open to the public and varies in price, ranging from $5-$10. Priority Registration is available now for WPU students, faculty, staff, and alumni through March 13. Registration for the general public will open on March 14. Early Bird pricing ends on March 22. Group rates are also available. The event is hosted by the William Peace University Office of Diversity and Inclusion in partnership with the Office of Academic Affairs.

“The strategic plan, Believe in Peace, is a bold plan focused on Immersive Learning, Innovative Partnerships, Strategic Growth and Distinctive Identity. The Hip Hop and Higher Education Symposium embodies this: it’s an immersive experience that includes innovative partnerships that will also highlight our distinctiveness as a diverse institution,” said Brian C. Ralph, Ph.D., President of William Peace University.

Additionally, WPU will serve as an education partner and sponsor of Dreamville Festival, which is expected to include national and local hip hop acts, including Big Sean, Nelly, Rich the Kid, SZA, and more.

For more information on the symposium, including registration details and information on panelists/speakers, please visit www.hiphopedwpu.com. Press inquiries should be directed to: hiphoped@peace.edu.